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Security guards receive ‘Officer of Year’ honors

Andres Osorio and Ritesh Raj helped saved resident who fell into glass cabinet

By Sam Richards

Staff writer

(Friday, March 18): Two Securitas officers working in Rossmoor, Andres Osorio and Ritesh Raj, have been selected from among some 120,000 North American Securitas employees as the company’s Officers of the Year for 2021. They were honored for heroism while helping a resident who had fallen into a glass cabinet and seriously injured himself.

Those efforts, on what at first seemed like a routine patient lift-assist call last October, were noted by Region President John H. Campbell and fellow Securitas officials who came to Rossmoor on March 8 to present Osorio and Raj with their awards.

The two men, both Martinez residents, received crystal trophies and Citizen watches, all custom engraved, and they will split a $5,000 cash prize.

“This kind of (call) changes you in that you know you are able to do something, to make a difference,” Osorio said.

Indeed, it didn’t seem like an unusual call when it came over about 4 p.m. on Oct. 24. Osorio, an emergency medical technician, and Raj, a StairTrac operator, were dispatched to what was described as a routine noninjury patient lift assist, to help a man who fell. The patient was no stranger; both men had responded to calls at that Rossmoor home before.

Securitas “Officer of the Year” honors were awarded to officers Andres Osorio, left, and Ritesh Raj.

But the pair found that the man not only had fallen into a wood-and-glass cabinet but had been cut badly on the broken glass, bleeding to the point his life was in danger.

This call had gone from routine to mission critical in an instant. Osorio said he and Raj found a victim who didn’t seem to understand how serious his situation was.

“He had thought he’d only had an accident, like it was an everyday thing,” Osorio said. “He didn’t realize how close he was to dying.”

“We had to wait for the (ambulance), which was about 15 minutes,” Raj said. “We had to do what we had to do – we had to save him.”

The victim has long since recovered, no doubt thanks in large measure to Osorio’s and Raj’s quick and decisive actions.

“This was such a great thing; it captured the attention of my boss,” said Campbell, based in Orange. Osorio and Raj knew they were being recognized for their response to the injured resident, Campbell said, but didn’t know until they met in person with Securitas officials March 8 the full depth and breadth of the honor, or what came with it.

Harminder Bains, a branch manager with Securitas, said such actions propel employees like Osorio and Raj into being role models, examples for other Securitas employees to emulate. And Securitas leaders, Bains added, want to make sure people who go out of their way to serve their customers – Rossmoor residents, in this case – are rewarded.

“We want to take care of our people; a lot of the time, that means saying ‘thank you,’ recognizing them, treating them like family,” Bains said.

Tom Cashion, Rossmoor’s public safety manager, said Securitas employees working at Rossmoor find themselves in position to make a difference more often than do officers working most other kinds of security details.

“The Securitas team truly does save lives,” Cashion said.