Dawn Witherspoon is the widow of Paul Besaw. After Paul's death Dawn and their daughter Allison were compelled to carry on Paul's legacy of helping others. In his honor they founded The For Paul Foundation to help support, honor and provide education for heroes and their families in honor of their hero.
Dawn recently finished her Master's in Psychology at Carlos Albizu University. Dawn is a Registered Mental Health Intern in the State of Florida specializing in Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and complicated grief.
Dawn is also a victim impact speaker and volunteer with Mothers Against Drunk Driving. She not only shares her story with high school students and other victims, she speaks on a panel for DUI offenders in hopes that they will learn from the tragedy her and her daughter have had to live through. In 2019 Dawn was nominated for the MADD Florida Hero Recognition Award. In 2020 Dawn participated by sharing her story in an award winning police training video to help change the way death notifications are made. In 2021 Dawn was awarded the President's Lifetime Achievement Award, awarded to those who contribute more than 4,000 hours of service in their lifetime.
Dawn has spent countless hours in the state and nation's capitol working closely with state and national legislators helping to change laws and make a positive difference in the lives of all EMS, First Responders, and their families.
When not helping other families that have lost a loved one in the line of duty, advocating for first responders and EMS or honoring our community heroes, Dawn enjoys traveling with her daughter Allison and spending time with all of their pets.