This year’s event was hosted by Fire Chief Kelvin Cochran, recently named Fire Chief of the Year by Fire Chief magazine, who was joined by honorary chair and former Gov. Roy E. Barnes and emcee and WXIA-TV news anchor Ted Hall. The foundation is a nonprofit that raises funds for the Atlanta Fire Rescue Department.
Hosted solely by the foundation, Breakfast with Our Bravest honors firefighters and emergency-rescue personnel for their dedication, community service, valor and commitment. The annual awards ceremony allows the community to celebrate the daily work of brave men and women, as well as recognize the sacrifice of these service people and their families.
Lt. Ronald Slatton received the Medal of Valor, awarded for an act of bravery or heroism that clearly places the recipient in a life-threatening situation. On March 24, Slatton responded with Engine 16 to a report of a person trapped in a manhole near Donald Lee Hollowell Parkway. On-scene investigators discovered the victim had fallen 40 feet down an embankment and into a silt pit at a construction site.
The patient was partially submerged, covered in mud and barely visible. After learning the arrival of technical-rescue aid was delayed, Slatton became increasingly concerned about the victim’s deteriorating condition and compromised airway. At great personal risk, he was able to reach the semi-conscious patient and prevent him from sinking further into the mud, becoming thoroughly trapped himself in the process. Eventually, both he and the victim were removed when additional resources arrived.
The Award of Merit was presented to two members of the department for act(s) heroism or bravery involving great personal risk. On Sept. 23, Sgt. Varlon Anderson responded with Engine 12 to a two-car accident on Ponce de Leon Avenue. On arrival, a driver claimed to have a gun and threatened harm to those on the scene.
Anderson immediately came to the aid of the other driver, pulling her into the backseat of her car and out of the line of fire, where he stayed with her and administered medical care until the police were able to take the threatening driver into custody.
On Sept. 6, Firefighter David Warren responded with Engine 25 to a house fire on Highview Road. Upon receiving information that a person was trapped inside, Warren entered the heavily smoke-charged environment without aid of a hose-line and located the unconscious victim. Through his quick and determined actions, he bravely saved a life.
Sgt. Bobby Stewart was named the Firefighter of the Year, which recognizes the firefighter whose overall work, performance, service, spirit and accomplishment warrant special attention.Stewart was honored for his professionalism and dedication. In addition to his assignment as a battalion aide, he performs collateral duties on the tactical medic team and the bike team, while also serving as a backup public information officer. Additionally, he serves as a fire cadet program coordinator and assists in planning and assessment.
Information: Jacques Murphy, (404) 630-4735 or visit www.atlff.org.