Recog­ni­tions

The 27th an­nual fire­fight­ers ball was held on Oct. 28th.

Advertiser (Grand Falls) - - Front Page -

GRAND FALLS- WIND­SOR, ML – The Grand Falls-Wind­sor Fire Depart­ment held its 27th an­nual Fire­fight­ers’ Ball at the Royal Cana­dian Le­gion Oct. 28.

Fire Chief Vince Macken­zie noted in his speech that from Oct. 1, 2016 to Sept. 30, 2017, the depart­ment re­sponded to 112 emer­gency calls for as­sis­tance, which is down from 122 calls in 2015-2016 and 135 calls in 20142015.

One of the most se­ri­ous fires from the last year was at a com­mer­cial prop­erty, a lo­cal RV deal­er­ship, he said. The fire was con­tained to the floor of ori­gin and roof area, and most of the prop­erty was saved. “This fire was the most sig­nif­i­cant not be­cause of the loss, but be­cause of the amount saved,” said Macken­zie. “Thirty em­ploy­ees were able to keep their jobs. This is a tes­ta­ment to the fire depart­ment’s train­ing and equip­ment.”

The depart­ment un­der­went 116 train­ing ses­sions cov­er­ing 55 top­ics for a to­tal of 299.5 ses­sion hours of or­ga­nized train­ing.

While it’s great news that the num­ber of fires in town was re­duced, there must be more em­pha­sis on fire­fighter train­ing, Macken­zie said.

“Fire­fight­ing has changed so much in the last 20 years in tech­nol­ogy and tech­niques to han­dles to­day’s faster and more toxic fires,” he said. “While there are less of them, their dan­ger has ever in­creased.” Light­weight con­struc­tion and more flammable fur­nish­ing and prod­ucts has chal­lenged fire depart­ment to keep up with train­ing, said the chief.

“The ex­pe­ri­ence once gained in fight­ing many fires on a reg­u­lar ba­sis is no longer there when we have less fires over­all,” Macken­zie said in his speech.

The Grand Falls-Wind­sor Fire Depart­ment is run mostly by ded­i­cated vol­un­teers who take time away from their fam­i­lies and jobs to en­sure the safety of Grand Falls-Wind­sor’s res­i­dent. A spe­cial thank-you and ser­vice medals were pre­sented at the end of the evening to fire­fight­ers who have served 20, 25 and even 45 years as vol­un­teers with the depart­ment.

SA­MAN­THA GARDINER/ THE AD­VER­TISER

Schol­ar­ships were pre­sented to two stu­dents who are chil­dren of fire­fight­ers in the Grand Falls-Wind­sor Fire Depart­ment. Michael Ma­her and Han­nah Butt re­ceived the schol­ar­ships.

Dave Byrne re­ceived a ser­vice medal for his 45 years as a vol­un­teer fire­fighter in the Grand Falls-Wind­sor Fire Depart­ment.

Hon­orary Civil­ian awards were pre­sented to Joe Zhouri of Don­nini’s Pizza and the late Owen Young of Blue­bird In­vest­ment. Pic­tured are Joe Zhouri, Janet Evans (Owen Young’s sis­ter), Ann Young (Owen Young’s wife) and Fire Chief Vince Macken­zie.

Plaques for re­tired fire­fight­ers were pre­sented to Lt. Leo White, and Capt. Will Ma­her, whose son Michael ac­cepted on his be­half.

SA­MAN­THA GARDINER/ THE AD­VER­TISER

Lt. Chris Sul­li­van, Lt. Jeff Butt and Lt. Derek Ralph re­ceived 20-year ser­vice medals.

SA­MAN­THA GARDINER/ THE AD­VER­TISER

Lt. Mau­rice Bartlett and Capt. Dar­ryl Bartlett re­ceived 25-year ser­vice medals.

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