Saturday, January 12, 2013

Fire Fighters Treated with Awards Banquet and Santa

Garden Valley Fire Chief, Jon Delvalle, describes the Fire District Banquet as a good evening of friendships and spending time with extended families to reflect over the year—what they’ve accomplished and dealt with.
He says, “The banquet is a chance to thank volunteers and to recognize their ‘other halves’. The spouses and children put up with the volunteers responding at all hours, sometimes leaving at dinner and other inopportune times. We want to make sure we acknowledge them too.”
Delvalle calls the fire fighters part-time professionals: “It’s not easy to perform at the level of expectation and training requirements all year.”

This December, the Fire District honored Kyle Davis, as Fire Fighter of the Year. The award goes to people with outstanding performance over the last twelve months.
“Another not so outstanding award we give is the FUBAR (%#!*# Up Beyond All Repair!),” says the fire chief, “In the past, one driver ran over equipment, another tore out the main end of the truck.”
This year, Jason Yearsley presented a smoking kid’s engine (with help from a fireworks smoke-bomb) to Jeremy Cadotte, who had a catastrophic motor failure, by seizing up the engine. Cory Kelly won the award for getting the truck stuck; his blooper was even funnier because he is a professional driver.
Jason Van Dyk left a radio on the truck and it fell on the road. A citizen found it but Delvalle never informed Van Dyk, who hadn’t wanted to admit the goof. At the banquet, the fire chief helped to wrap a radio bra around Van Dyk—the bra had been fitted with extra attachments--a chain and lock and bungee cord under the crotch, with a bunch of zip ties.

The Fire District Auxiliary was also honored at the banquet. With all of the events that occurred in 2012, Auxiliary volunteers put in a lot of extra work time, not only at the sites and fire station, providing food and nutrition, but in fundraising efforts. The District acknowledged Diane Caughlin, as president; Toni Palmiotto, as secretary/treasurer; and Delvalle adds, “Debbie Drake is in the middle of that too. They have about twenty volunteers signed up, with a core of around eight.”
The fire chief also recognized the Fire Commissioners, who are elected officials: Don Matthews, Leigh Ward and Ron Reil, who keep on representing the District. Delvalle says, “No one else wants the job, although Leigh is up for re-election in 2013—we’ll see.”
A couple of days after the banquet, Santa arrived with red flashing lights at the Christmas party held at the fire station. Due to parking limitations, he was unable to land at the station and had to park his sleigh at the Garden Valley airport.
A gift for each child was provided by the Volunteer Fire Fighters Association and the children enjoyed treats, carols and Christmas readings.

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