N.C. county firefighters, telecommunicators honored for saving lives

Fire Chief Chris Wright and Firefighter Tyler Crews were awarded with the Medal of Valor, the highest award given by Vance County Fire Department


Tyler Davis
Henderson (N.C.) Daily Dispatch

HENDERSON, N.C. — Employees of Vance County Fire Department were awarded medals for a fire call that took place earlier this year.

Fire Chief Chris Wright and Firefighter Tyler Crews were awarded with the Medal of Valor, the highest award given by Vance County Fire Department. It is conferred on an employee "who saves the life of another person on the conditions of extreme danger and personal risk," Wright said.

Crews and Wright rescued a woman from a structure fire at 689 Port Drive on March 27. Crews, after a secondary search of the property, found a door, behind which he found the victim. He and Wright conducted a two-person carry and got the victim to emergency medical care.

"We don't do this job for medals or plaques or recognition, we do it because we have a passion to serve and help others," Wright said.

Senior telecommunicators Teri Williams and Eason Massie, as well as supervisors Michelle Shearin and Fannie Kincaide, received Meritorious Service Awards for their roles in providing "life saving advice" to the victim of the March fire, Emergency Operations Director Brian Short said.

"They kept her talking and gave her encouragement for over 14 minutes, all the while listening to her breathing getting worse with each breath," Short said.

Other employees were awarded for their efforts in other past incidents.

Wright gave Battalion Fire Chief Bryant Williams and Fire Captain John O'Neal the Award of Merit for their rescue of a man who had been trapped in a grain bin back in 2016.

Battalion Chief Adam Pegram and part-time Fire Officer Chris Gibbons received the Medal of Merit for their rescue of a man trapped between his truck and a fifth-wheel camper in 2018. O'Neal was given a merit commendation bar for his role in the same incident. Pegram also received a merit commendation bar for his role in the 2020 rescue of a woman whose car had been driven into a pond.

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(c)2022 Henderson Daily Dispatch, N.C.

McClatchy-Tribune News Service
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