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Governor Bush, Gallagher and Cabinet Honor Florida’s Outstanding Fire and Rescue Service Personnel


CONTACT:  Nina Banister
(850) 413-2842
TALLAHASSEE—Governor Jeb Bush, Chief Financial Officer Tom Gallagher and the other members of the State Cabinet today honored fire and rescue service personnel from around Florida for outstanding contributions to their industry and their communities.
Ten fire and rescue workers from throughout Florida were recognized for their work in 2004, including one firefighter who on-duty pulled a victim from a burning building and off-duty saved a life by applying the Heimlich maneuver to a patron in a restaurant. 
"These men and women are role models, but all who answer the call to serve and protect the public are heroes," said Gallagher, who also serves as State Fire Marshal.  "I extend my gratitude to each and every one who puts on that uniform and responds when the alarm sounds."
The Governor and Cabinet also recognized firefighters' commitment to raising money for the Muscular Dystrophy Association as part of the International Association of Firefighters' annual "Fill the Boot" campaign.  Florida firefighters last year raised more than $1.2 million.  In honor of their efforts, the Cabinet proclaimed this week, April 3-9, Florida Firefighter Appreciation Week.
Professional Firefighter of the Year - Manly C. Bolin, formerly of Jacksonville Fire-Rescue Service

Career Firefighter of the Year - Craig M. Rogers, Palm Harbor Special Fire Control & Rescue District

Volunteer Firefighter of the Year - Alexander Nualart, Plantation Fire Department

Fire Investigator of the Year - Darrell W. Brown, Gainesville Fire Rescue Department

Fire Inspector of the Year - George M. Ellington, Cedar Hammock Fire Rescue

Forestry Firefighter of the Year - Frank Gibbs, Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, Division of Forestry, Sebring

Fire Instructor of the Year - Buck Tomlinson, Department of Financial Services, Division of State Fire Marshal, Bureau of Fire Standards and Training, Ocala

Fire Marshal of the Year - Anthony Apfelbeck, City of Altamonte Springs

Fire Chief of the Year - Richard Williams, Gainesville Fire Rescue Department

Emergency Preparedness Manager of the Year - Keith Holman, Martin County Emergency Management
Also, the Central Florida Fire Academy in Orlando was named Training Center of the Year.
Other events are planned today in honor of firefighters. 
At 2:30 p.m. in the Capitol Courtyard, Gallagher will present the first check to the Florida Firefighter Charities representing money raised from the sale of the Florida Salutes Firefighters license plate.
That will be followed at 3 p.m. by a ceremony commemorating the installation of the Florida Fallen Firefighter Wall of Honor.  The Wall of Honor is located on the plaza level of the Capitol at the Chief Financial Officer's office.   Established and funded by the members of the Florida Joint Council of Fire and Emergency Services Organizations, the Wall names 129 Florida firefighters who have died from job-related injuries.
"The Wall of Honor will serve in perpetuity as a remembrance of the sacrifice and service of our fallen firefighters," Gallagher said.  "It will also serve to remind us of the risk all of our fire and rescue personnel take every time they go out."