The Palm Coast Fire Department honored its associates at an awards banquet Saturday.
“We’re dealing with very dedicated people, and people who use their time very generously in the community,” said Mike Beadle, fire chief for the department.
Beadle thanked the career and volunteer firefighters from the entire department for their work before highlighting some of the top associates from last year. Members of the department were asked to nominate firefighters for their actions and winners were selected by a committee.
The C-Shift E242 unit was honored for its response to a structure fire call received at 12:33 a.m. on Nov. 15. Three units in total responded to the fire that night — the first located a woman in the residence on fire, the second worked to contain the fire and the third located the woman’s husband.
The night culminated in two saves. Even though the female saved later died at Florida Hospital Flagler. Capt. Sean Major was given the award for unit commendation, and every person on scene that night will be given the accommodation as well.
Additionally, five more firefighters were given gold lifesaving medals for entering the burning structure to remove a resident from the structure: Lt. Matt Stevens, firefighter Omar Kanaan, firefighter Jose Duque, Lt. Jason Laughren and firefighter Jon Kozloski.
Fire service commendation ribbon
Firefighter and paramedic Dan Driscoll was unable to attend the ceremony to accept a fire service commendation ribbon for his efforts when responding to a medical emergency in January. A victim was in distress and experiencing chest pain. His extremities were blue in color, and he was moments away from cardiac arrest. Driscoll administrated advanced life support, saving the victim’s life.
Fire service commendation ribbon
Firefighter and paramedic Jeshon Kavanaugh was awarded a fire service commendation ribbon for his actions when in January a unit responded to a man down in a parking lot. A man was found on the ground pulseless. With the help of a deputy, Kavanaugh administrated CPR, with failed results, so Kavanaugh decided to administer a chicho thyroidotomy, a difficult procedure that helped restore the victim to health.
Exceptional duty ribbon
Between 2008 and 2012, the fire department has responded to more than 2,600 calls. Fire Police Capt. Steve Garnes has responded to every paged call in that time period. Because of that, he was presented with an exceptional duty ribbon.
Administration commendation ribbon
Michelle Lamonica was honored for nearly 20 years of service in the department. She first worked as a volunteer firefighter, and now works as an associate. She has helped the department with administrative work.
Career firefighter of the year
Firefigther Patrick Juliano was named career. Juliano, the head of the department’s Honor Guard, has also gone out of town to help with two line-of-duty funerals in the last year. Juliano recently started work toward his master’s degree. He was unable to accept his award Saturday night because he was working a second job he took recently to help pay bills after his father died recently. Department members commended Juliano for his work ethic.
Volunteer firefighter of the year
Mario Munoz was named volunteer firefighter of the year for his constant commitment to his department, his integrity as a firefighter and his consistent performance.
Volunteer associate of the year
Tom Baker, who worked 443 volunteer hours with the department in 2012, was named the volunteer associate of the year.
Fire police officer of the year
Gary Hatch was named police officer of the year because of his commitment and dedication to the department. Hatch was unable to accept the award Saturday because he recently relocated to Pennsylvania.
Most improved volunteer firefighter
Derrick Gaddis, who was unable to attend the ceremony, was honored as the most improved volunteer firefighter for the year.