Tennessee Governor Bill Haslam’s Chief Operating Officer Greg Adams served as the keynote speaker for the annual First Responder Awards ceremony held in the Old Supreme Court Chambers at the state capitol on Friday. The event was organized by the state’s Department of Safety and Homeland Security to celebrate those who have dedicated their lives for the health and welfare of all Tennesseans.
Two Hamilton County first responders, Myron Schroepfer, Paramedic, and Kelly Tornow, Emergency Medical Technician, were among those honored. Mr. Schroepfer and Ms. Tornow responded to an emergency situation at Ooltewah High School. They performed cardio pulmonary resuscitation on a 17-year old student, saving the life of the student.
“This ceremony serves as a reminder of the enormous risks taken by emergency responders on a daily basis. We are grateful for your life-saving efforts and public service to Tennessee,” Mr. Adams said.
The honorees included 28 first responders from each of the state’s 11 Homeland Security districts, the Tennessee Highway Patrol, Tennessee Department of Health, and the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency (TEMA).
“The men and women who serve our state as first responders are on the front lines of every emergency, those we hear or read about and those we may never know,” Commissioner Gibbons said. “I am honored to share in this day with all of the recipients and their families. We are grateful for your dedication to the safety of our communities.”
The First Responder Awards ceremony has been held every September since the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States. The Office of Homeland Security also marks the occasion during September, which is National Preparedness Month.
National Preparedness Month is a nationwide effort encouraging Americans to take simple steps to prepare for emergencies. Critical to the preparedness process are the men and women who serve our state and citizens as first responders.