“And they’re not only going to take the current description of that award, but add to it some of that language about the mental attitude entry and working toward having the right positive attitude both on and off the job in their personal lives and character as well,” Brown said.
Brown said he felt as though it was necessary to start this tradition of an awards banquet to honor the members of the BFT, saying that even though all of his firefighters say what they do is just their job, they deserve to be honored for their work.
“In the fire service, we take pride in honor, tradition, and duty,” he said. “One of the goals that I wanted, coming into Brownsburg, was to re-establish that commitment. Often times you’ll year firefighters say they’re not in it for the glory, and ‘it’s my job.’ They’ll often downplay it, but it’s an important part to recognize that.
“The most amazing thing is not always the life-saving tasks they do, it’s when they’re on duty with the small things they help participate in, like go out to schools, go out and do child safety programs, neighborhood picnics, let kids come and climb on the engines.”
A silent auction raised $1,594 for the Make a Wish Foundation in Schanz II’s honor as well.
Additional awards bestowed at the banquet included Crystal Tatman being named Emergency Medical Services Provider of the Year, and Lt. Keith Rinehart being named Officer of the Year. Firefighters George Ignas and Raymond Kindred were given Espirit Du Corps Medals. The Chief’s Medals went to Lt. Bill Zeunik and Battalion Chief Stephanie Martindale, and the Medal of Merit was given to Sean Atkinson.
Brown said he often sees his crew shine in moments of high stress, and cited a recent police chase across multiple counties that ended with a serious crash at 56th Street and Northfield Drive.