Members of the all-volunteer Fire Department and Emergency Medical Services teams selflessly give their time without pay for the community’s benefit to help save lives, but on one night every year they take time to honor Lakeview’s finest at the annual EMS Banquet.
Held Saturday, March 22 at the Elks Lodge, the EMS Banquet was a chance for those who give so much of their time a rare opportunity to be shown appreciation for their hard work. Normally on call 24 hours a day for emergencies, almost all fire and EMS volunteers were present for a grand feast of tri-tip or chicken provided by Ray and Marla Turner, served by the Thomas Creek 4-H Club.
During the dinner the top-10 fire fighters and EMS members were announced, based on a maximum 132-point scoring system for service, with prizes awarded for their efforts as well as gift certificate drawings. Melissa Vo was the top point-recipient for EMS, while Battalion Chief Geoff Pointere earned highest honors among fire fighters, who also earned the 2013 Officer of the Year Award. Frank Feeley and Eric Sarensen shared the Fire Fighter of the Year Award.
Also honored were members of the community who have donated their time to the fire department and EMS, a gold pin given out every time a volunteer completes five years of service. Robert Carlson and Bobbie Steninger both received standing ovations for reaching 35 years of volunteer service, as well as ex-member Roland Glade for his 22 years. Steninger was also praised for her efforts in raising interest among LHS students in possibly becoming paramedics.
The event was also an opportunity to honor two longtime volunteers in the community who passed away recently; Bud Williams and Leon Flick. Williams had volunteered for 50 years with Fire/EMS, while Flick’s tremendous efforts were also recognized.