TELLURIDE, Colo. — Telluride Marshal’s Department Deputy Nicholas Xavier, an Ovid native, has been awarded the State of Colorado Lifesaving Award for his actions in the Town of Telluride in October 2018.
Responding to a 4 a.m. call of smoke in the neighborhood, Deputy Xavier found smoke billowing from the eaves of a 1 1/2-story home, and called for the fire department. Going inside without the aid of any respiratory equipment, Xavier found a resident standing on an attic stairs with a hose, his upper body slumped in the attic.
Xavier pulled him from the attic and took him outside. The man, conscious but incoherent, was unable to say if others were in the house. Deputy Xavier then reentered the smoke-filled house, and conducted a room-to-room search. Finding no one, but unable to get into the front portion of the home from inside, he ran back out to enter from the front.
Another deputy, Jeremy Platt, was just arriving, and together they broke down the front door to enter. Deputy Platt found a unconscious resident under a pile of blankets, and removed him to safety. The fire department arrived to find the house fully engulfed, and though it could not be saved, was able to keep it from spreading to neighboring houses.
For their brave actions, deputies Xavier and Platt were awarded Colorado’s Lifesaving Medal.
Xavier is the son of Linda and Gary Xavier and has been a deputy marshal in Telluride for several years. Prior to that he was a corporal in the San Miguel County Sheriff’s Department, also in Telluride. He graduated from the Colorado Police Academy in Delta Colorado. He and his wife Rheanna, who is a corporal and jail supervisor in the San Miguel County Sheriff’s Department, live in Placerville, Colorado.