Several Meridian firefighters to be honored next week

Published: Jan. 17, 2020 at 3:09 PM CST
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21 Meridian firefighters were selected to be honored at the Mississippi State Valor Awards for their selfless work that essentially saved multiple lives.

Fire captain Justin Kentfield is one of the first responders who will be recognized for responding to a medical call in April 2019.

"We just followed our training and followed our procedures and started CPR,” said Kentfield. "The paramedics were impressed with how everything went, we wound up saving the guy."

Like Kentfield, firefighter Evan Pickens also responded to that same call and said although he doesn't work for recognition, he's honored to be awarded next week.

"It’s truly surreal and I’m just grateful to be able to be a servant of this community and get out here and do good things,” said Pickens.

Over a dozen other firefighters will be recognized for their work during a house fire in August 2019. Fire Chief Ricky Leister said he's over the roof about the good news.

"I am so proud of these guys, it’s a testament to the training, to their dedication of service and their dedication to the community of wanting to save lives,” said Leister.

The committee that selects award recipients is made up of members of the state fire academy, Mississippi Firefighters Association and the state fire chief association.

The ceremony is set to take place at the Embassy Suites in Ridgeland on January 22.

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