On Wednesday, October 26th, Norfolk County Paramedic Services held its first Night of Celebration to honour paramedic achievement and service at the Simcoe Legion.
“Our paramedics have faced tremendous challenges over the past few years and they continue to rise to the occasion for their patients, their service, and our community,” said Chief Sarah Page. “We are grateful that we had the opportunity to highlight some remarkable achievements tonight, but are truly humbled by the unwavering dedication, compassion and resiliency all our Norfolk County Paramedics demonstrate on a daily basis.”
Among the awardees were paramedics receiving Norfolk County Years of Service Awards — for five, 10, 15, 20, 25, and 30 years. Paramedics Robert Coyle and Darren Baily received 30-year bar for their Governor Generals Exemplary Service Medals.
Retirees Darren Bailey (34 years), Elaine Meadows (30 years), and Brandon Wise (24 years of part-time) were honoured for their dedicated service to Norfolk County. OPSEU Local 279 President Devon Lansdell and Vice President Jenny Townsend presented the retirees with a gift on behalf of their fellow paramedics and the Union.
Save Awards were given out to four paramedics, for two separate emergency calls in 2022, which resulted in the saving of a life after vital signs were absent.
Paramedics Nancy VanVliet and Danny Desmond were honoured for an emergency call where their patient’s heart stopped in the back of the ambulance on the way to the hospital. Their quick actions and skills revived him before his arrival at the hospital.
Paramedics Sharon Green and Wendy Stewart were honoured for their work during a call in May 2022. The patient had collapsed, a neighbour initiated CPR, and with the assistance of Norfolk County Firefighters, they were able to revive the patient. Lindsey Kincaid, the neighbour involved received Norfolk County’s Lifesaving Recognition, as well as a special National award from St. John Ambulance— the Silver Lifesaving Award. This award is presented to an individual who saved or attempted to save, life through the application of first aid knowledge and skills, where no risk to life exists.
Presented by Don Denne, Chair of the Board of Directors for St John Ambulance Southwestern Ontario, and Andrew Gough (with his service dog Riggs) with St. John Ambulance Honours and Awards. Ms. Kincaid was awarded for selflessly jumping in to assist her neighbour, performing CPR until the emergency responders arrived, then assisting and supporting the family throughout the incident. Norfolk County Fire Department Station 2 Port Dover Deputy District Chief Ken Shepherd, Captain Lee Bertrand and Captain Chris Lombardo will be honoured on November 3, as they could not attend the celebration.
The Stork Award was given out to paramedics Johane Borris and Jacob Malevich for safely assisting in delivering a baby on a call.
The Centre for Paramedic Education and Research Quality of Care Award was given out to Kari Maxin. This award is peer-nominated for excellence in patient care, compassionate service, and patient advocacy.
Our preceptors, who mentor college students in the Primary Care Paramedic program throughout their required ride-out/road shifts received awards. Les Block, Corrie Cowell, Adam Brown, Ellen Kempmann, and Brittany Garner.
Also celebrated were those paramedics that volunteered throughout the year with our public relations activities, school presentations, a fundraising drive for Ukraine, and holiday food and toy drives. Paramedics Shane Lucier, Sarah Muskiluke and Amanda Rockery were honoured.
Service Commendations included:
- Samantha Pacheco – Community Paramedicine program champion and leadership, volunteering, compassionate delivery of care to all patients, Peer Support involvement.
- Jeff Mullin – Health and Safety champion, COVID-19 assistance, Acting Commander role, volunteering, Community Paramedicine program work, Peer Support involvement and organization of food drives.
- Patrick Quinn – professional advocacy for all his peers, on several committees, excellence in patient care and documentation, Peer Support involvement
- Jenny Townsend – champion of mental health and wellness for paramedics, Peer Support lead and union leadership
- Cori Kennedy – Administrative Assistant – for extraordinary patience, unsung hero behind the scenes.
Norfolk County Paramedic Services provides services to the community with respect for human dignity within our defined areas and to the best of our ability and training. Additional information about Norfolk County Paramedic Services including policies, mission statement, how to become a paramedic, and more, can be found on the Norfolk County website.