By Kitsey Burns Harrison
It was a full house for a change at Monday night’s meeting of the Yadkin County commissioners. Kindergarten students from East Bend School got the meeting off to a start by leading the pledge of allegiance.
Much of the crowd on Monday came for a special ceremony recognizing recipients of the Yadkin County Life Saving Award for EMS personnel.
EMS Director Keith Vestal said that since the inception of the Yadkin County EMS department, there has not been an award such as this. Vestal said that a year ago a member of the staff, Justin Latham, came to him to suggest an awards program to recognize members of the county’s emergency services department. Awards for valor, excellence, military service and longevity have now been adopted by the department as well as an award for life saving.
Vestal said many EMS departments have such an an award, but in Yadkin County the criteria to be eligible for the award is much more strict. In order to be eligible for this award, EMS personnel must be able to not only get a pulse back in a patient experiencing cardiac arrest, but that patient also must leave from the hospital with a good quality of life.
On Monday, the following Yadkin County EMS staff members, including members of the communications department, were recognized for this achievement: John Spillman, Amanda Reynolds, Billy Shore, Stuart Hanes, Rojelio Mojica, Sheila Ridings, Margret White, Anthony Davis, John Matthews, Jeff Putman, Nick Hiatt, Penny Everhart, Justin Latham, Daniel Tucker, Keith Armfield, Makayla Lowery, Caleb Madison and Anthony Davis.
Each of the commissioners thanked the award recipients for their work.
“I’m very proud of each and every one of you,” said Commissioner Frank Zachary. “The award is nice, but I can imagine that the satisfaction that each of you felt in achieving the requirements for this award, particularly that the patient survived and has continued a life that you are largely responsible for, is even better. We’re very proud of each and every one of you. You’re a great team.”
Following the award ceremony, the commissioners approved several items on their action agenda including a contract with Hughes Plumbing for sewer line and grease trap services at the hospital and a lease agreement for the waste disposal convenience site on Speer Bridge Road. Several county employee positions also were reclassified to more of the job requirements.
The county offices will be closed Nov. 26-27 for Thanksgiving. A joint meeting of the Board of Commissioners and the Yadkin County School Board will take place on Dec. 1. The next regular meeting of the board will take place on Dec. 7 at 9 a.m. at which time a public hearing regarding the Rapid Entry Key System Ordinance for the fire service will take place.
Kitsey Burns Harrison may be reached at 336-679-2341 or on Twitter @RippleReporterK.