As much as we’d like to forget 2020, we can’t forget the stellar work performed by some of our members–and members of the community. This week we honored those people with the 2020 Fire Awards.
Firefighter of The Year: Jason Dunagan
Described as a firefighter officers can rely on and trust, Jason is a knowledgeable and compassionate EMT who consistently anticipates the medical needs of his patients and medics. He’s a member of the Technical Rescue Team, and gives back to the community by volunteering for Santa’s Posse and Memory Makers on a regular basis.
Officer of The Year: Captain Eric Simukka
There’s no way to describe all the reasons why Eric was named Officer of The Year. We don’t have the space. Look at it this way, Eric is the EMS Captain, which means when the pandemic broke it was his responsibility to ensure we were both protected and could adequately protect our community. The very first COVID case was in our District, but to this day not one firefighter or paramedic has contracted the virus. Eric is passionate about safety, is a skilled communicator, and is one of the most responsive people in the fire service. He’s also a man of many talents: Father, grandfather, cook, BBQ master, musician, instructor, and mentor.
Meritorious Service Medal: Captain Eric Simukka
The Meritorious Service Medal is recommended for those fire service employees or volunteers whose action, conduct, or achievement places them in high standing with the fire service and which brings credit upon both the individual and the department. Eric was instrumental in providing high quality PPE, EMS training, education, vaccine scheduling and EMS supplies while navigating these unprecedented times. And darn it, he’s just a nice guy!
Certificate of Exemplary Performance: Administration Staff
This an award given by the Firefighters Union, the International Association of Firefighters Local 452. Normally it bestowed to a line firefighter, but this year members decided to give it to the Administration Staff of District 6. Members said the District did a good job navigating the choppy waters of the pandemic, and make this a place where people want to come to work.
Fire Medal: Dr. Lynn Wittwer
The Fire Medal is the highest civilian award presented by the department. It is presented to honor a citizen for extraordinary effort in saving human life, reducing a serious injury, or aiding in the significant reduction of property loss while jeopardizing their own personal safety. Dr. Lynn Wittwer is the Program Director for the Clark County Public Health Department, and during the pandemic we’ve basically had him on speed dial. During the year we’ve spent countless hours consulting Dr. Wittwer, and his help has made in possible for us to better serve our community while protecting our own members. Thank you Doctor!