Union City News: Just an ordinary man from Union City


Today we look at a man who was born and raised in Union City, Indiana. He attended Union City Community High School, played in the high school marching band and then attended Indiana State University, Terre Haute, Indiana, where he again played in the marching band for the Sycamores. He grew up just down the street from our family and attended the same church and was even baptized the same day as our daughter. Well here is his story:

Jerry Williams, of Villa Hills, Ohio, is just an ordinary man with an extraordinary skill that anyone can learn. With it, he has become a hero.

On Oct. 8, Williams, 52, a fuel delivery driver for Harper Oil in Florence, was in the office speaking with his supervisor when another employee burst into the room asking if either of them knew CPR.

Williams had been taking CPR for several years through the Gold Wing Road Riders Association, the world’s largest single-marquee social organization for owners and riders of Honda Gold Wing and Valkyrie motorcycles.

“I said yes and thought, ‘wow, what’s going on here,’” Williams said. The three rushed down the hall into the boss’ office where Ernie Robinson, 51, was slumped over on the couch, unconscious. He was taking large gasps for air, Williams said. Robinson is a maintenance man at Harper Oil.

Within a few moments Robinson stopped breathing. The other employees helped Williams get him to the floor and he started compressions.

“I could see the shock on everybody’s faces,” Williams said. “Everybody was frozen, it was scary. I kept thinking, ‘If I don’t do something he could die.’ That helped me do what I didn’t think I could do.”

Meanwhile someone called 911. Suddenly, the other employees started chanting, “Come on Ernie, come on Ernie.”

In six to eight minutes, Robinson began breathing again just as Williams could hear the sirens from the ambulance. Robinson was taken to the hospital and is now home recuperating.

“It feels good to still be here,” Robinson said. “I’m glad that he had the knowledge of what do. I’m a reserved person so I keep my emotions in check but I’m very very grateful.”

The entire Harper Oil team is grateful to Williams, as well, according to company chairman and President Stephen Harper.

“I am extremely grateful for the heroic action taken by Jerry as he immediately took control of the situation, applying his knowledge and training and saving the life of Ernie,” he said. “We are proud to have him as part of the Harper Oil Products team and he has inspired us to follow in his footsteps and make CPR training available to everyone in the company.”

Williams was also recognized at a special ceremony and presented a plaque in honor of his heroics.

“It makes me feel good that I was able to help,” Williams said. “This has also made me value life more and appreciate it. I believe that everybody should learn what to do in an emergency. I really value my training now.”

This is a remarkable story and needs to be shared. What have you done for your community?


Saturday, Union City Lions semiannual Pancake Breakfast 6 a.m. – 1 p.m. at the Elks Lodge in Union City on Columbia Street.

Nov. 21 is the Annual Christmas Shopping Days 9 a.m. till 5 p.m. at multiple locations throughout downtown Union City. This is Lights in the Park Festival Opening as well. Friday after Thanksgiving delight to the opening of the Community Christmas in Harter Park which begins with a light parade ending at Harter Park with over 3-4 million lights throughout the park. What a great way to open the holiday season!

Dec. 4 is Christmas in the City 5 p.m. – 10 p.m. more details later.

Plenty to do in Union City. Union City Redefined!


By Linda DeHaven

Linda DeHaven is the new author of the weekly column Union City News for The Daily Advocate. She may be reached at [email protected]. Viewpoints expressed in the article are the work of the author. The Daily Advocate does not endorse these viewpoints or the independent activities of the author.

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