Kenny Baldwin

PADUCAH — A former Murray police officer is being credited with being one of two law enforcement officers who saved the life of a toddler Thursday in McCracken County.

The McCracken County Sheriff’s Office said Deputy Kenny Baldwin, who previously served three years with the Murray Police Department, helped tend to an 18-month-old girl who had sustained serious injuries after falling from a riding lawn mower.

In a news release, McCracken County Sheriff Matt Carter said Baldwin and Cpl. Zach Dunigan responded at 1:15 p.m. Thursday to a home on Old Mayfield Road after a distress call was received. Carter said the nature of the call was not immediately known, only that it involved a small child.

Baldwin and Dunigan arrived within minutes and quickly discovered that a child had been riding a zero-turn mower with an adult and fell. Carter said the child’s leg was struck by the engaged blades of the mower, causing serious and life-threatening injuries.

The sheriff said Baldwin and Dunigan quickly applied a Combat Application Tourniquet to the child’s leg to control the bleeding. A unit from Mercy Regional EMS quickly took the child to Mercy Health (formerly Lourdes Hospital).

Because of heavy thunderstorms in the area, a helicopter was not able to fly the child to a Nashville, Tennessee hospital. Carter said a Mercy Regional EMS unit took the child to Nashville with an escort from a McCracken unit and assistance from Kentucky State Police to the Tennessee state line. At that point, a unit from the Tennessee Highway Patrol assumed the escort role for the ambulance the rest of the way to Nashville.

Carter said the last update on the child indicated she was in stable condition in Nashville and had undergone surgery.

“I’m proud of the fast actions by all involved in this incident and by all reported accounts, their quick actions saved this young girl’s life,” Carter said in a statement. “Corporal Dunigan and Deputy Baldwin were truly real-life heroes (Thursday). I ask that the community please keep this child and the family in your thoughts and prayers as they face the days ahead.”