Firefighters get long service awards

Lake Country Fire Department well served by great, paid-on call members who have been with the department for many years

Graham Kershaw receives 30 year exemplary service award from fire chief Steven Windsor (left) and deputy chief Brent Penner.

A pair of Lake Country firefighters have received their due, after years of service to the Lake Country Fire Department.

Bob Smith received his twenty five (25 year) Province of British Columbia long service award in November while Graham Kershaw received his Fire Service Exemplary service award (Government of Canada) for 30 years of service at the November awards ceremony.

“The dedication shown by all members of the Lake Country Fire Department should be recognized,” said Mayor James Baker. “They are the first responders providing assistance to those at risk due to fire, motor vehicle accident, medical emergency, not to mention ice, open water and cliff rescue.  We appreciate them very much.”

Smith started out as a firefighter in January 1991 at Carr’s Landing Fire Department. He received his NFPA firefighter 1 & 2 designation was on the rope rescue team and is best known as the being in charge of the First Medical Responders program.

Smith decided to retire December 1, 2016 but will still remain active with fire department community events such as the annual food bank community drive.

Kershaw started out as a firefighter in Oyama Fire Department in July 1986 from which he was promoted to Training Officer in November 2000. He has received his NFPA firefighter 1 & 2 designation is a member of the Ice Rescue team and is a recognized Fire Service Instructor.

At the same recognition event at the end of November, various awards were presented to recognize honourary members with ten or more years of service, five years of service, and completion of the first year of service.

New recruits were acknowledged, and firefighters with the best attendance to emergency call outs and practices for each of the stations in Winfield (Eric Bauld), Oyama (Chris Casparis) and Carr’s Landing (Adam Youngest), were recognized. A firefighter of the year award was presented to one member of each station as recognition from their peers for service above and beyond the normal call of duty. Ben Burbine – Station 71; Bob Smith – Station 81; and Chris Casparis – Station 91 were recognized.

Team Leaders, Eric DeGelder and Ryan Murdain, acknowledged thirteen instructors for the high school Junior Firefighter program for their significant volunteer commitment. Fire Prevention Program team leaders Cory Drinkwater and Tim Kim recognized members for their volunteer hours spent to offer the Safety, Awareness & Fire Education (SAFE) Program to every Grade 3 student within Lake Country, along with other school and community events scheduled to raise awareness of fire prevention practices.

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