Firehouse Heroism and Community Service Awards: Unit Citations

Austin, TX, FD

Engine 2, C Shift; Quint 1

On Nov. 12, 2012 at 1:30 A.M., Engine 2, C Shift, arrived at the scene of a heavily involved house fire. Conditions were ideal for flashover; heavy dark smoke charged and under pressure with high temperatures. However, crying family members were screaming that two children were still trapped. Following two-in two-out operation guidelines, crews hold fire while others search and remove one victim. A back-up team, Quint 1, joined to hold back the active flame front. Quint 1’s crew entered the bedroom and removed the second victim from under the bed. The children continue their recovery.


Chesapeake, VA, FD

Captain Brian Lee – Ladder 2

Lieutenant Jerry Bohn – Engine 3

Firefighter Kyle Billips – Engine 1

Firefighter Charles Cook Jr. – Ladder 2

Firefighter Kurt Johnson – Engine 3

Upon arrival, heavy smoke was rolling from the rear over the roof of the residence. One person was reported trapped. Engine 3 forced entry through the front door and found heavy fire conditions in the kitchen that had spread to the attic. Engine 1 arrived and assisted. A primary search by Ladder 2 found the victim unconscious in a bedroom, with no pulse. Lifesaving treatment was utilized by Medic 3 and the patient was revived. Unfortunately, he later succumbed to his injuries.



Swift Water 6

Lieutenant Robert E. LaRocco

Firefighter Thomas Fee

Firefighter Johnathan Hoffman

Firefighter Edward Morrison

Firefighter Christopher Rooney

Firefighter Michael Woods

Swift Water Team 6 was activated due to the threat of Hurricane Sandy. On Oct. 29, 2012, the team was returning to quarters at 7:30 P.M. when they observed fire two blocks east involving several buildings. Fanned by hurricane-force winds, the fire was spreading westward and with water levels approaching five feet could not be reached by apparatus. Upon arrival, the unit encountered panicky civilians trapped on the roof of several one-story buildings. Two victims, one on fire, jumped into the water and were pulled from the rapid water by Lieutenant Robert E. LaRocco and Firefighter Christopher Rooney. Firefighter Thomas Fee scaled an awning to the roof and assisted two victims to the boat. This position became untenable and Fee broke a window on a two-story exposure, made a bridge to span the alley with a door and led remaining victims to a rear apartment. Firefighters Edward Morrison, Michael Woods and Rooney entered the water (now approaching six feet) to force open the building’s door; due to extremely strong currents, members needed to physically support each other to keep from being swept away. A human chain was made to pull remaining victims from the doorway through the currents to the boat. LaRocco placed himself between the fire and victims to shield them, sustaining second-degree burns. In total, 16 people were rescued. The blaze consumed two blocks of buildings.


Johnson Creek, WI, Fire/EMS Dept.

On Aug. 30, 2012, at approximately 4:30 P.M., crews, led by Deputy Chief Jim Wolf, responded to the scene of a truss collapse at a construction site with one victim suffering serious head injuries. The team entered the collapse zone (with full equipment), removed the damaged truss and assessed and packaged the victim. Units were simultaneously securing the rest of the building. The patient survived.


Prince George’s County, MD,

Fire/EMS Dept.

Companies 801, 855, 849,

806 and 857; MD 844

During the evening hours of June 1, 2012, units responded to a swiftwater rescue of three teenagers at the Anacostia River. Due to flash flooding brought on by heavy thunderstorms, the water was rising and hypothermic conditions were feared. Technical Rescue Team Members (TRTM) were called and they worked with Truck 801 to use its aerial as an anchor point to lower a rescuer down and use a haul system to bring the three victims back up for a successful rescue.


Yakima, WA, FD

Engine 92, A Shift; Engine 293

Engine 92, A Shift, led by Lieutenant Don Dexter, was dispatched on Oct. 2, 2012, as a single apparatus to an automatic alarm. Upon arrival, smoke was showing from the mobile home and one victim was reported. Two crew members entered through a window while the pump operator utilized the hoseline. Engine 293 arrived and assisted with a chainsaw to cut the window and remove the wall. The patient was removed and transferred to the burn unit, where he recovered.