2023 Firefighter of the Year & Lewis Baker Award Nominations
2023 award recipients!
2023 TFA Firefighter of the Year Award goes to Garrett Angel and Dylan Davis of Pikeville Fire Department. (Left)
Lewis Baker Award goes to Chief Tom Brown (Right)
Firefighter of the Year Nomination
November 18, 2022 -
Pikeville Fire Department was requested for mutual aid for a confirmed structure fire in a neighboring fire department in the county. Upon arrival, we were notified there were two civilians inside. Personnel began to knock down exterior flames to make an interior attack on A side. The home had two floors, one at ground level and one floor mainly below ground level with garage access. Shortly after PFD personnel made entrance into the building the rear basement wall (C Side) collapsed which caused the entire home to shift several feet backward and collapse into the basement area. At this time two of our personnel were trapped inside the home with the fire continuing to grow. PFD Firefighter Warren Todd was stationed at the front door when the collapse occurred, narrowly escaping the same situation. Exterior fire personnel rushed to the front of the home to begin searching and trying to locate the missing brothers. A county-wide all call was initiated on the radio. Within approximately 90 seconds both firefighters used their skills to make their way upward into the attic cavity and onto the front porch. During their collapse several pieces of equipment and personal protective equipment were abandoned and destroyed while they attempted to exit the burning residence.
Both personnel received medical evaluations and were cleared at the scene. Due to the location and the lack of available personnel both individuals were adamant to continue assisting in the operation. Shortly after collapse the fire load grew rapidly and it was determined the operation would shift to a recovery for both bodies. Crews were not able to continue operations immediately due to fuel and medical grade oxygen tanks in the basement which had become a hazard. FF Davis and Captain Angel played an integral role in locating both bodies later that night. In later debriefs, one individual stated he remembered praying and believing his time may have come to an end. Much of their training can be traced back to the Tennessee Firemens Association Annual Conferences along with TFACA and other training in the area.
One might wonder why I chose to nominate both persons for this honorable award and the answer is simple. Both individuals overcome an obstacle that night that every firefighter prays never happens to them.
On behalf of myself and the Pikeville Fire Department, I am happy to nominate Mr. Angel and Mr. Davis for this award. Both individuals exemplify the best of the firefighting profession - they are always ready to take on the difficult work we are often called upon to assist with. Their actions that night were in the highest traditions of the fire service. Each individual is highly worthy of consideration for this honorable award.