Sheriff Idleburg Awards ‘Purple Heart Award’

Auxiliary deputy was severely injured at traffic crash scene in Volo in 2019

WAUKEGAN – Lake County Sheriff John Idleburg recently presented Auxiliary Deputy Thomas Brasuell with the Lake County Sheriff’s Purple Heart Award.

Idleburg surprised Brasuell with the award at his residence. Members of the sheriff’s office and sheriff’s auxiliary deputy unit attended the presentation.

The Purple Heart Award is reserved for members of the sheriff’s office who are severely injured in the line of duty.

On Dec. 23, 2019, Brasuell was at the scene of a fatal traffic crash in Volo. Brasuell was blocking the scene and directing traffic while sheriff’s crash investigators were conducting the fatal crash investigation. While Brasuell was directing traffic, a drunken driver drove his car into Brasuell, severely injuring him.

It took months for Brasuell to recover from the injuries he suffered in the crash.

“I am proud to present Auxiliary Deputy Brasuell [with] the Purple Heart Award, and while he was severely injured, we are thankful he was not killed by the reckless intoxicated driver who struck him,” Idleburg said. “Our staff report for duty ready to serve the community every day knowing the risks and dangers they potentially face. I am honored to serve alongside such a dedicated group who are deeply devoted to the Lake County community.”