Tallahassee, FL - A couple is awarded at the Florida State Capitol for their part in helping find a missing and endangered teen last year.
Back in September of 2018, the Flagler County Sheriff's Office reported that Rickey Wheeler, who suffers from muscle dystrophy, went missing and was in need of medication.
It wouldn't be long until the community and local law enforcement agencies sprung into action. Four days later, Putnam County Sheriff's Deputy Emmett Merritt and his Bloodhound K9 Putnam found Wheeler alive in a wooded area near a Publix off of Belle Terre Parkway.
One of the first civilian groups involved in that search was Anthony Butrym and his wife, Dawn Butrym.
“The Butrym’s were the first two citizen volunteers to sign up to help search for Rickey,” Flagler County Sheriff Rick Staly said. “They did not know Rickey or his family. They only knew that there was a missing endangered juvenile missing who needed help and they were there to help any way they could. They are very deserving of this award and they reflect well on our community.”
Earlier today, Sheriff Rick Staly traveled to Tallahassee, where the couple was being recognized for their part in the search for Wheeler at the Florida Missing Children's Day ceremony.
Today, I joined @fdlepio Commissioner Rick Swearingen and law enforcement personnel, public officials and citizens to remember Florida’s missing children and recognize the efforts we are taking to educate Floridians on child safety and abduction prevention. pic.twitter.com/4d9ajiOWRH— Casey DeSantis (@FLCaseyDeSantis) November 22, 2019
During the ceremony, the Butryms were both awarded "Citizen of the Year," which was presented by Florida’s First Lady Casey DeSantis, Florida Department of Law Enforcement Commissioner Richard Swearingen and Florida Attorney General Ashley Moody.