By Juli McDonald


ROCKLAND (CBS) – Two Rockland police officers were honored Tuesday night for their lifesaving response to a workplace accident back in March. Their quick action stopped the bleeding of a Pembroke man who lost his arm.

John Kelley, 66, had been performing preventive maintenance on a piece of machinery.

“I reached in and next thing you know, I had nothing. My arm was out, some bones sticking out. That was it,” Kelley said.

Kelley’s left arm had been severed. When police arrived, they found him sitting in a chair with a pool of blood beneath him. Sgt. Thomas MacDonald and Officer Mark Nota used a tourniquet kit, before Rockland firefighters arrived to provide further care.

John Kelley with Rockland Police officers who saved his life (WBZ-TV)

John Kelley, with his family, was in the audience at the Rockland town selectmen meeting as the officers were presented lifesaving awards. MacDonald said more rewarding than the recognition was seeing how this 911 call turned out.

“Mr. John Kelley is the hero. He’s the one who had to fight through that. He’s amazing. It’s nice to see him here smiling with his family. Making jokes,” MacDonald said.

With several of his four children and eight grandchildren around him, Kelley is filled with gratitude.

“If it wasn’t for my family, the people I work with. They took care of me. I wouldn’t be here today,” Kelley said.

Juli McDonald

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