Good natured jokes, smiles, photos, applause, and a catered dinner highlighted the annual Palisade Fire Department member appreciation banquet held Saturday evening Feb. 27. Approximately 70 volunteer fire fighters and EMS (Emergency Medical Services) personnel, plus guests, attended the appreciation banquet held at the Civic Center meeting room.
While the evening was full of humor, some of the volunteers at the dinner were on call for possible emergency calls, which was a reminder of the serious nature of the services provided by the volunteers.
“The mission of the Palisade Fire Department is to protect the lives and property of the citizens and visitors of the town of Palisade and the Rural Fire Protection District in the safest manner possible,” the program for the evening states.
At the dinner, EMS Chief Joe White noted that 2016 is the 100th anniversary year of the Palisade Fire Department and that he hopes there may be a recognition event in November.
Fire Chief Richard Rupp and Chief White hosted the banquet. Chief Rupp thanked guests and family members. “A special thanks to family, friends and co-workers associated with our department members,” the program stated.
Palisade town officials attending the dinner were: Mayor Roger Granat, Mayor Pro-Tem Dave Edwards, and Trustees Penny Prinster and Robynn Sundermeier.
Chief Rupp pointed out that the volunteers responded to 898 calls in 2015, which was a record. Rupp also noted that although all the crew members are volunteers, they are eligible for benefits in the Fire and Police Pension Association. Members are now vested at 10 years.
Fire Department members receiving certificates of service were: Brenda Aceves, Alex Almy, Sam Amador, Justin Berg, Joseph Billings, Devin Bogle, Katlyn Bremmer, Lucas Cahalan, Matt Childs, Rich Durnan, Kyle Erickson, Kelby Eslava, Ashley Frick, Courtney Garcia-Hays, and Andrew Giandonato.
Also, Kyle George, Collin Girardi, Ryan Glassman,Tyler Glassman, Jake Harsha, John Hayes, Kevin Henderson, Aaron Hicks, Bill Hokanson, Bryan Huff, Jana Jarvis, Jonah Larson, Dennis Lytle, Charlotte Martin, Doug Martin, Molly McDaniel, Jessica Miles, Jordan Mueller, Javier Padilla, Todd Paugh, and Matt Pipes.
Also, Brian Porter, Jordan Quackenbush, Bryson Rasmussen, DuWayne Ritchie, Scott Roahrig, Reanne Rogers, Richard Rupp, Palisade Fire Chief; Chance Shepherd, Marc Silingardi, Dana Tweedy, Nate Voorhees, Christine Westermire, Joe White, Palisade EMS Chief; Seth Wilson, and Jennifer Young.
PFD Rural Board members recognized were: Chase Spaid, Elaine Korver, Gary Rupp, Maggie Sommerville, and Cheryl Borchardt.
EMS officials recognized were: Rob Talbott, Diane Brown, Bill Hall, Mike Hill.
Also recognized were retired PFD firefighters: Bill Binnian, Chan Clymer, Johnny Vanlandingham, Jesse Cox, Mrs. Harry Herman, Rose Ann Key, Albert Merlino, Val Rupp, Shirley Wesley, Beverly Kissell, Bob Tipping, and Bob Casey.
The dinner was catered by the Cowboy and the Rose Catering, Grand Junction.
See photo gallery below of a selection of firefighters and EMS staff recognized at the banquet.
Joe Billings, Firefighter of the Year. Also pictured are Fire Chief Richard Rupp (left) and EMS Chief Joe White.
Jordan Quackenbush, Rookie of the Year. Also, Fire Chief Rupp and EMS Chief White.
Jennifer Young, receiving a certificate of service from Fire Chief Rupp.
Matt Pipes, receiving a certificate of service from Fire Chief Rupp.
Devin Bogle, receives a one-year service certificate from Chief Rupp.
Bryson Rasmussen receives a certificate of service from Chief Rupp.
Bill Hokanson, recognized for most transports, 121, and Patient Care Reports, 63. Congratulated by Chief Rupp and Chief White.
Colin Giradi is recognized by Chief Rupp for two years of service. Rupp stepped up on a chair to greet Giradi.
Jana Jarvis is presented a certificate of service for one year by Chief Rupp.
DuWayne Ritchie is presented a certificate of service by Chief Rupp.
Kelby Eslava was named EMS Provider of the Year and received a certificate of service from Chief Rupp.
Jake Harsha is presented a certificate of service from Chief Rupp.
Ashley Frick receives a certificate of service from Chief Rupp.
Rich Durman is presented a certificate of service from Chief Rupp.