FAIRFAX COUNTY– Twenty-eight outstanding police officers and first responders from Fairfax County and Fort Belvoir were recognized at the 18th annual Police & Firefighters Tribute hosted by Mount Vernon Springfield Chamber of Commerce and presented by Inova Mount Vernon Hospital.
Stories of persistence in solving crimes and dedication to community were shared as each officer was individually recognized. Supervisor Dan Storck, Supervisor Rodney Lusk, and Col. Joseph Messina along with departmental leadership helped present the awards.
“Our first responders have a passion for helping others,” said Supervisor Dan Storck. “We applaud their commitment and need them in our community,” he said.
Roberta Tinch, President and CEO of Inova Mount Vernon Hospital praised the commitment of first responders and told of her first-hand experience with their bravery and dedication during the Aurora, Colorado shooting in 2012.
Many award recipients were recognized for going above and beyond the requirements of their job both in their interactions with the public and in their support for other team members professionally and personally.
Receiving awards from the Franconia Police Station were Andrew Cox, Police Officer of the Year; Selah Rash, Detective of the Year; Gary Gaal, Police Volunteer of the Year; Kim Barber, Meritorious Service; and Travis Tate, Supervisor of the Year.
Recognized from the Mount Vernon Police Station were Kenyatta Momon, Meritorious Service; John Buffington, Detective of the Year; Moises Romero, Officer of the Year; Juan “Rick” Lopez and Sharon Nichols as Auxiliary Officer of the Year, and Carlos Lama, Supervisor of the Year.
Outstanding personnel from the West Springfield Police Station were Steven M. Lescallett, Meritorious Service; Bryan C. Huntley, Detective of the Year; Jeffrey A. Sledge, Officer of the Year; James “Tom” Gaetjen Auxiliary Officer of the Year, and Cary J. Petrovich, Supervisor of the Year.
Fairfax County Fire & Rescue Department presented awards to Steven Chen, Volunteer Firefighter of the Year; Andrew Snell, Company Officer of the Year; Mike Salzano, Firefighter of the Year; and Miriam Pelham, EMT Medic of the Year.
The Fort Belvoir Police Department recognized Philip Young, Police Officer of the Year; Christopher Ferris, Investigator of the Year; Samantha Risner, Military Police Officer of the Year; Brian A. Thomas, Police Supervisor Officer of the Year; and, Heung Chu, Army Security Guard of the Year.
Honorees from the Fort Belvoir Fire Department were Adam E. Stover, Fire Company Officer of the Year; Johnny Roberts, Jr., Firefighter Medic of the Year; and Ryan C. Barlow-McCall, Firefighter of the Year.