By Joe Reavis
Firefighters, emergency medical technicians and emergency dispatchers received recognition for their work during 2017 at the annual Wylie Fire-Rescue awards banquet held Friday, Feb. 9.
The banquet was at the Event Center of First Baptist Wylie. Fire Chief Brent Parker served as emcee and Jimmy Johnston led the invocation.
Parker briefly pointed out that the department answered 5,100 calls last year, a 15 percent increase in volume, dispatched 18 personnel to help with Hurricane Harvey relief efforts and was designated a Best Practices department by Texas Fire Chiefs Association.
“The people of Houston really appreciated us,” he declared.
Mayor Eric Hogue offered a few remarks of gratitude to the department, saying, “You guys are pretty special people. We are so honored to have a wonderful fire department for 109 years.”
A slide show of firefighters in action was shown during a catered meal served by cadets with Wylie East High School Air Force JROTC. Dinner guests took part in solving a crime during a murder mystery presentation of the Murder Mystery Company.
Individuals and businesses recognized by Parker for their support of WF-R through the year were photographers Rick and Alicia White, Wylie Economic Development Corporation and Executive Director Sam Satterwhite, amateur radio operator Daryl Mortenson, Ballard Street Café and owners Ronny and Linda McGranahan, NAPA and owner Chris Tilton, Lutz Woodworking and Greg Lutz, Wylie Tire Shop and Dan Stufft and Baylor Scott and White Hospital.
Firefighter of the Year award went to Chad Lloyd, a go-to employee throughout the year. Parker noted Lloyd is always positive and willingly tackles assignments, such as teaching dive classes, working with a gun club by giving instruction for active shooter situations, and even riding a citizen’s pink bicycle back to her house.