NAS Key West Community
Fire & Emergency Services Gulf Coast awarded CNRSE Fire Department of the Year
Story by Bruce Cummins on 02/21/2019
By Kaitlyn Peacock
The emergency and fire vehicles of NAS Pensacola have a promise etched into them, “Protecting those who defend America,” a promise upheld by the men and women of the Fire and Emergency Services Gulf Coast (F&ESGC) every day. For their excellence in service, F&ESGC won the Commander, Navy Region Southeast (CNRSE) Fire Department of the Year (Large Category), Feb. 19, for a second year in a row.
In a recent congratulatory message, the award was announced by Commander, Navy Region Southeast Rear Adm. Bette Bolivar.
“It is with great pleasure that I announce our Navy Region Southeast winners of the 2018 Fire and Emergency Services Awards competition,” Bolivar wrote. “This year’s recipients exceeded the requirements of REF A and have set the bar for excellence and the highest standard of first-responder performance. These superstars epitomize our core values and demonstrate a sincere commitment in protecting those who defend America.”
Along with winning overall fire department of the year, two F&ESGC service members were recognized. ABH1(AW/SW) Anthony Kirby and ABH2(AW/SW) Lewis Mashburn, both based at NAS Whiting Field, were awarded Military Fire Officer of the Year and Military Firefighter of the Year respectively.
In addition to the CNRSE awards, NAS Pensacola Commanding Officer Capt. Christopher Martin recently recognized four firefighters from F&ESGC with the Lifesavers Award for their efforts in saving the life of a man suffering a heart attack Nov. 2 during the Blue Angels Homecoming Air Show.
F&ESGC Fire Chief Timothy Dias has reaffirmed the department’s commitment to serving at the highest standard. As part of this commitment, the department will be conducting their second rescue academy this year, with aims of making it an annual class with a focus on training rotating personnel. Two new crash trucks, fire vehicles used to assist in plane crashes, will be delivered this year to NAS Whiting Field and NAS Pensacola’s Sherman Field to help support ongoing operations. F&ESGC has also begun working with the three Coast Guard Cutters stationed at NAS Pensacola, USCGC Decisive (WMEC 629), USCGC Dauntless (WMEC 624) and USCGC Cypress (WLB 210). Their main mission with the cutters is to support the Coast Guard in at-sea rescues and to assist injured crewmembers when the ships return to dock.
Having won the regional award, F&ESGC is now up for the Navywide Commander, Navy Installations Command (CNIC) Fire Department of the Year award. Dias said although the department has never won, he has hopes that the hard work and effort the men and women of F&ESGC will match and exceed the high standards of the U.S. Navy.
NAS Pensacola, referred to as the “Cradle of Naval Aviation,” is designed to support operational and training missions of tenant commands, including the Naval Aviation Technical Training Center (NATTC), Naval Aviation Schools Command (NASC), the Center for Naval Aviation Technical Training (CNATT), Marine Aviation Training Support Groups (MATSG) 21 and 23 and is the headquarters for Naval Education and Training Command (NETC).