(ROCKWALL, TX — May 3, 2019) Several outstanding employees of first responder services in cities throughout the county were recognized at the Rockwall Noon Rotary meeting on Thursday, May 2.
Individuals with Rockwall police, fire and EMS, Fate Department of Public Safety, Heath Department of Public Safety, McLendon-Chisholm Fire Rescue, and the Rockwall County Sheriff’s Office were presented with the Roy Hance First Responders Award in recognition of their above-and-beyond efforts to protect and serve their respective communities. Hance was a longtime Rotarian and Rockwall resident, and co-founder of the Rockwall County Sheriff’s Posse.
Congrats to the following individuals who received the award:
Ryan Perry, City of Fate DPS
“Ryan started out as a volunteer firefighter for us out of fire school in 2012. He went to work for another agency for a while, and then we hired him full time as a public safety officer and police officer. He is one of those guys who’s the first one to jump in and take a task volunteer for something. He goes out there and does a great job for our community and for our citizens. We really appreciate his attitude and everything he does.” — Lyle, Lombard, Fate DPS chief.
Keven Rowan, City of Heath DPS
“Keven keeps everyone rolling on his shift. Some of the things that his supervisors said about him are that he has a great work ethic no matter the task, and is a former recipient of the Rotary Officer of the Year award for saving two young women who drove into Lake Ray Hubbard. Keven has outstanding communication skills and a sense of humor that is off the charts, and that’s one of the things that makes him so effective in a job that can oftentimes be stressful. He’s a tribute to what we want our public safety officers to be.” — Terry Garrett, City of Heath DPS chief
Daniel Lewis, McLendon-Chisholm Fire Rescue
“Daniel started with the McLendon-Chisholm Fire Department in 2017. Since then, he has completed the State Firefighters’ & Fire Marshals Association’s Firefighter I & II training program. He’s currently taking the steps to receive his Texas Commission on Fire Protection certification, along with his National Registry EMT. Daniel took the lead on remodeling our home fire station. We now have sleeping quarters in there, a day room, kitchenette, and a full shower. One thing about Daniel is that no matter what the call is, he is always there. Having men like Daniel in the department helps us to be successful in what we do.” — James Simmons, McLendon-Chisholm Fire Rescue chief
Russ Rahimradeh, Rockwall County EMS
“Russ has been a leader since he joined us in 2013. Recently he took on a big endeavor in changing our stroke protocol. He realized that was something that needed to be customized for Rockwall County, so he reached out to the major hospitals in Dallas, met with their stroke departments, came back here and met with our local hospitals to develop a protocol for our county. Russ is always pushing to do more, always advocates for his peers and looking to do what’s right. We are so appreciative of him and thankful that we have him.” — Martin Ramirez, Rockwall County EMS paramedic supervisor and director of operations
Hagan Jones, Rockwall Fire Department
“Hagan was actually chosen by his peers to receive this award, which I think speaks volumes not only to his technical expertise and ability to do the job, but his ability to get along with others and work well with others. The fire department in Rockwall has been doing the Limited First Responder program now for about two years, where we assist Rockwall County EMS in high priority medical calls. Hagan has been recognized with a unit citation where he performed exceptional work and had a direct impact on saving a life. He’s one of those guys who you just know is going to do the right thing. That looks different in a lot of situations, but he always does the right thing and does it very well.” — Kenneth Cullins, Rockwall Fire Department chief
Ed Fowler, Rockwall Police Department
“Ed has 29 years of service and has been with the department since 1990. He has accomplished a lot while being employed by the Rockwall Police Department. He helped start our traffic unit, he’s been an FTO (field training officer), a sergeant, a lieutenant, and now is a captain of the support services unit. The reason he was selected for this award this year is mostly because of his work with the Texas Police Chiefs Association’s Recognition program, a voluntary process where police agencies in Texas prove their compliance with 166 Texas Law Enforcement Best Practices. Ed went through all 166 to get our department a recognition status, which we received at a banquet a few weeks ago. I want to thank him for his hard work and for doing such an excellent job for us.” — Kirk Aldridge, Rockwall Police Department assistant chief
Jennifer Turnbaugh, Rockwall County Sheriff’s Office
“Officer Turnbaugh came to work for us on Oct. 2nd, 2017. In a short amount of time, she has become a model officer who others can look up to and learn from. Her strong work ethic is one of her defining qualities and has played a monumental role in developing the officer she is today. She has received several awards for this hard work, some of which include Officer of the Quarter and awards for receiving consistently high evaluation scores. She always shows up to work on time with a positive attitude and motivates others. She’s also been given the title of Field Training Officer in our organization, teaching and mentoring our younger officers. Officer Turnbaugh has shown time and time again that she cares about her shift, the people she works for and with.” — Todd Calkins, Rockwall County Sheriff’s Office jail administrator
Zachary Yates, Royse City Fire Department
“Zach has only been with us for six months, so you might ask why he’s receiving the Firefighter of the Year award for Royse City. Our department is what’s known as a combination fire department; we have full time paid staff and we also have volunteers. Right now we only have two guys who are full time who actually ride in the fire truck and respond to calls, so we rely heavily on volunteers. As you know, volunteers nowadays are very hard to come by. What Zach has been able to do for us is devote sometimes in excess of 40 hours a week to us outside of his full time job. He responds to calls, mans the station, and has been instrumental in helping us on the medical side of our department.” — Richard Bell, Royse City Fire Department chief
Johnny Clark, Royse City Police Department
“Officer Clark has been with the Royse City Police Department for nearly three years. He is currently assigned to the day shift and has been instrumental in helping guide some newer officers that have been within the department. He’s been a great asset to our police department.” — Richard Bell (Chief Bell presented the award on behalf of the Royse City Police Department, who along with Officer Clark were unable to attend the meeting).
Story and photos by Austin Wells, Blue Ribbon News.
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