Last August, many area firefighters had to miss the Park City Elks Lodge's annual picnic honoring first responders because they were battling the Rockport 5 Fire close to Rockport Reservoir.
No such calamity happened Saturday, so the 13th annual picnic was attended by a large crowd of first responders and their families amid the gently rolling breezes and trees at Rotary Park on the edge of Thaynes Canyon.
Five first responders -- one each from the North Summit Ambulance Service, Park City Fire District, Summit County Sheriff's Department, Utah Highway Patrol, and Park City Police Department -- were given awards for their sterling service to the community, said Rickie Taylor, exalted leader of the lodge.
"We feel it's important to identify them and thank them," said Taylor, who helped give out the awards just prior to a meal featuring a pig roast. "They literally put their safety in front of ours."
The winners received certificates for dinners for two at the St. Regis Deer Valley and a cash award from the local Elks Lodge.
The winners were:
- Justin Hemingway, an EMT with North Summit EMS. A memo from the North Summit EMS nominating Hemingway spoke of his qualities as a natural leader and a standout employee. "He works full-time as a sheriff's deputy with Summit County but still manages to make time to run with NSEMS," the nominating memo said. "His EMT skills are impressive and he is very thorough, [and] he always has a calmness about him on calls or facing any situation."Advertisement
- Mike Phillips, a patrol officer with the Utah Highway Patrol. A memo nominating him said that even though he has only been a member of the UHP for three years, he has established himself as someone who wants to make the roads safer for the community. "Not only is he really tall, he is a section leader in many categories such as motorist assists, traffic stops and removing impaired drivers from the road," the nominating memo said. "He has been recognized in a public service impaired-driving commercial that is shown at all the Megaplex Theaters before the featured film."
- Ed Wilde, a sergeant with the Summit County Sheriff's Department. A memo from the sheriff's office said that over a 19-year career in law enforcement, Wilde has set himself apart by having a diverse complement of skills. "Ed personifies the dictum espoused by President John Adams," the memo said. "'Upon common theaters, indeed the applause of the audience is of more importance to the actors than their own approbation. But upon the stage of life, while conscience claps, let the world hiss! On the contrary if conscience disapproves, the loudest applauses of the world are of little value.'"
Before the ceremony, Summit County Sheriff's Captain Justin Martinez, who presented the award, said Wilde "has had an illustrious career" and has been "an excellent asset to the sheriff's office."
- Corey Allinson, an officer with the Park City Police Department. A memo nominating him said that as the School Resource Officer for the Park City School District, he has incorporated his new position with his other patrolling duties. "Officer Allinson has, on many occasions, worked with officers in identifying and locating suspects through resources he has developed," the memo said. "He has created programs to track juvenile offenders and has taken substantial steps to mentor some of those same students."
- Peter Emery, engineer with the Park City Fire District. A memo from the district nominating Emery said he has made an impact as a Peer Fitness Trainer since 2008, when he joined the district."[He] has developed [an] employee race participation reimbursement program to promote fitness among employees," the memo said. "[As] recruit camp instructor, [he has] helped with recruit camp fitness for seven years."
Before the ceremony, Fire Chief Paul Hewitt said that Emery "epitomizes our core values He makes me very happy."