Local heroes were in the spotlight during the 10th annual Westminster Public Safety Recognition Foundation awards banquet. The evening recognized …
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Local heroes were in the spotlight during the 10th annual Westminster Public Safety Recognition Foundation awards banquet. The evening recognized police officers, firefighters, emergency medical technicians and community residents for acts of courage and heroism.
The Westminster Public Safety Recognition Foundation is a nonprofit organization dedicated to recognizing city employees, residents, and police and fire personnel for heroism, bravery and acts of service that occur in Westminster. This year’s banquet, on Sept. 7, honored 27 people. Although each story was different, the award winners were connected because of their actions to help save a life.
“The foundation’s No. 1 goal is to honor our local heroes. We do that through the awards banquet,” said chairwoman Betty Whorton. “The banquet is our way of showing our police officers, firefighters and anyone who has stepped out to help someone else that we appreciate what they have done. It’s our way of saying thank you.”
David Schmitz received the Fire Citizen and Outstanding Service Award and the Police Citizen Commendation Award for his quick thinking on June 28, 2011. He saved the life of a woman who had driven her car into a lake. He dove into the water and pulled the woman from her car before she drowned. Police later learned that the woman was the mother of two and was attempting to commit suicide.
Police officers Kim Martinez and Ray Esslinger received the Police Meritorious Service Award for their actions in the face of personal danger. The officers helped a 14-year-old boy who intended to jump off a 28-foot-high ledge. Because of their actions, the teenager did not jump off the ledge and left the scene unharmed.
Some honorees received plaques, others were given medals and some received pins. But all were recognized by the community of Westminster and those whose lives were saved.
Below is a list of all of the award winners:
Fire Citizen and Outstanding Service Award
Angela Cole, Jarod Olson, David Schmitz and Krystal Vallejos
Fire Career Achievement Award
Police Citizen Commendation award
Charles Osen and David Schmitz
Westminster Citizen’s Police Academy Alumni Association Officer of the Year Award
Police Meritorious Service Award
Ray Esslinger, Ashley Smith, Kim Martinez, William Tran and Michael Rex
Police Distinguished Service Award
Tim Guthrie and Paul Newton
Fire Lifesaving Award
Heidi Brueske, Donna Kimble, Shawn Caswell, Ron Lamb, Daren Delimont, Darrell Linkus, Danny Fitch, Mike Rosado, Greg Frakes, Phil Tahmindjis, Jeff Graham, Brian Timmens and Brian Hard
Fire Medal of Honor Award
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