OC’s First Responders Recognized At Annual Ceremony

OC’s First Responders Recognized At Annual Ceremony
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OCEAN CITY — The Ocean City Fire Department last weekend recognized many of its members for their commitment and service to the community throughout 2014 with a special awards ceremony on Saturday.

The OCFD held its 2nd Annual Awards and Recognition Ceremony at the Holiday Inn on 66th Street on Saturday. The celebration included naming the Firefighter of the Year, Member of the Year, and Paramedic of the Year, along with several Years of Service Awards, Distinguished Service Awards and Unit Citations.

“Today is a special day,” said OCFD Chief Chris Larmore. “Our members go above and beyond the call of duty to make our department a special one. We’re proud of each and every one of you, but I’d also like to take this time to thank our community and especially your families. Our department thrives on your support and we genuinely thank you for it.”

For the record, the Fire/EMS Division Firefighter of the Year Award went to Douglas W. Scott, while the OCVFC Firefighter of the Year Award went to Jeffery D. Lawson. Eric Borneman was honored with the Fire/EMS Division Paramedic of the Year Award.

Along with Larmore and Deputy Chiefs Chuck Barton, Bo Duke and David Hartley, several dignitaries attended the ceremony, which began with the Ocean City Volunteer Fire Company Ladies Auxiliary Awards. The Ladies’ Auxiliary Member of the Year Award went to Nancy Smith and the Lifetime Achievement Award went to Margie Anderson. In addition, the Ladies Auxiliary donated $3,000 to various organizations including the John Paul Adkins II Scholarship Fund, the F. Michael Sacca Scholarship Fund, the OCVFC cadet program and the OCVFC.

Following the Ladies’ Auxiliary, award were presented for Length of Service, Special Recognition, Unit Citations and Incident Citations. Ocean City Mayor Rick Meehan, State Senator Jim Mathias and County Commissioner Joe Mitrecic were on hand to present proclamations to select members for 25 and 30 years of service. In addition, David Cropper was recognized for 35 years of service to the Ocean City Fire Department.

One of the most meaningful awards, an Incident Citation and Citizen Service, was given this year for a CPR save on the Boardwalk. The patient, who attended and spoke at the ceremony on Saturday, referred to the incident as “The Night of the Guardian Angels.” With the courage and assistance of a local couple, who administered CPR until medic units arrived, the victim was taken to PRMC where he was healed and recovered.

“Our members do not devote themselves to the first service in order to be recognized or awarded for their actions to their community,” said Larmore. “Despite their modesty and humbleness, every member of our organization has contributed to our success. We could be here all night giving awards for all of the great work they do, but since we don’t have time for that, I’m thrilled to be here to honor just a few today.”

The Captain W.B.S. Powell President’s Award went to Roger Steger. The F. Michael Sacca Member of the Year Award went to Connor Braniff, the Harry J. Cropper Chief’s Award went to Marvin Timmons and the Alfred E. Harmon Training Award went to Raven Gronsbel.

David Cropper was honored for 35 years of service to the department. Those honored with 30 Year Length of Service Awards included Marvin Timmons, Randolph Sherman and Del Baker. Those with 25 years of service included Guy Rickards, William Bishop, Jr., William Hall and John Romeo, Jr. Receiving 20-year length of service awards were David Coleman and Bo Duke. Those receiving 15-year length of service awards included James Lampe, John Fisher, Sean Donovan, Robert Trautman and Joseph Sexauer. Bradley Bunting received an award for 10 years of service, while those receiving five-year service awards included Sean Goggin, Justin Hearne, Jordan Braniff and James Parenti.

Those receiving Special Recognition Awards for the Marine Unit included Reginald Bell, Del Baker, Darrick Elliot, Sean Holloway and Anthony Villani. OCFD Dive Team members who received Special Recognition were William Rathel, Jason Williams, John Bunting and Nicholas Kinhart.

Several firefighters received Unit Citations for their actions on a particularly heavy call day last August 5 including Albert Hastings, Amos Scott, Brian Tayman, Bryant Bunting, Chris Kehne, Clayton Moore, Cory Polidore, David Cropper, Derrick Simpson, Duane Phillips, Edward Evans, Eric Olson, Frederick Senger, Hugh Hommel, Jason Bloom, and Jeffrey Lawson.

Also receiving Unit Citations for the heavy call day last August 5 were Jerry Priestly, Joseph Kuhl, John Williams, Julien Farges, Kathleen Hartley, Kover Ellingsworth, Mick Chester, Rancel Evans, Reggie Bell, Robert Tanner, Jr., Ryan Glenn, Ryan Whittington, Sean Sullivan, Sidney Wooten, Skip Carey, Tyler Stierhoff, William Rathel, Will Savage, William Hall, William Tilghman, William Tyndall and Yvette Rode.

Incident Citations and Citizen Service Awards for CPR saves were issued to Kathleen Hartley, Amanda Bunting, Hugh Hommel, Jeff Aperance, William Tyndall, David Myszka, Eric Borneman, Patrick and Chris Lieb, Anthony Rhode, Sr., Anthony Rhode, Jr., and Robert Rhode.

David Cropper was recognized with a Distinguished Service Award for assistance with fixing the Route 50 bridge. Distinguished Service Awards for care of a brother firefighter went to John and Janet Fisher. Special Recognition for Citizen Appreciation went to the Harman Family and the Wilkins Family.