Jefferson County Deputies recognized for life-saving actions during January motel fire


From left to right: Sgt. Ed Coseo, Deputies Nick Curtiss and Christian Hughes, Sheriff Colleen O’Neill, and Undersheriff Brian McDermott.

WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWTI) — Deputies have been recognized for their life-saving efforts during a fire incident last week.

The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office has recognized Deputies Christian Hughes and Nick Curtiss for the efforts during a motel fire that occurred on January 11 in the Town of Watertown, New York.

Deputies Hughes and Curtiss assisted in removing an unresponsive individual from a room that was on fire in a room at the Relax Inn. Additionally, both helped to evacuate all other motel residents.

Deputy Hughes and two New York State troopers were taken to Samaritan Medical Center following the incident for smoke inhalation.

The unresponsive individual, later identified as Robert W. Murphy, 55, was also taken to Samaritan Medical Center; later airlifted to Upstate Medical University hospital.

Just over a week later, Deputies Hughes and Curtiss were awarded with Letters of Commendation from Jefferson County Sheriff Colleen O’Neil for their actions.

The Sheriff’s Office shared in a Facebook post that they were recognized at a “quick, sparsely-attended event” due to COVID-19 guidelines. But the Office stated that “the setting doesn’t diminish the recognition for their bravery.”

Jefferson County Sheriff Deputies Christian Hughes and Nick Curtiss were recognized by the Office on January 19, 2021.

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