78th annual fireman’s banquet well attended

While surrounded by family members Kristopher, Koley, Kellie, Karrin and Kent, ambulance director Kris Borchard received a plaque for her 25 years of service from Steve Allen.
The 78th annual fireman’s banquet was held the evening of Saturday, March 12. The Freeman Fairfield Center was decorated very nicely, mostly thanks to Rhawnie McGruder and Melissa Kindall.

While surrounded by family members Kristopher, Koley, Kellie, Karrin and Kent, ambulance director Kris Borchard received a plaque for her 25 years of service from Steve Allen.

There was a good turnout again this year. Chief Steve Allen welcomed all in attendance with Bud Miles giving the invocation before the wonderful meal served by Ma Famiglia.
Service awards were handed out to EMTs and firemen. This year three firemen received the coveted Honorary Membership Trumpet for 10 years of service: Jake Welle, Laura Smith and Ron Willey.
The traditional cutting of the cake by the oldest and youngest fireman was again carried out. This year it was Dick Merriam and Scott Vetter. The lovely cake was again made this year by Vicki Crawford.
Steve thanked all the people responsible for helping us do our job each year, including all the dispatchers, law enforcement, BLM, Forest Service, White River Electric and Atmos Energy. And of course, the families that sacrifice because of the time volunteers spend away from home training and responding to calls.
This year the Employer of the Year award was presented to Colowyo Coal Co. L.P. for their commitment to the volunteers. Colowyo Coal Co. L.P., not only provide EMS and fire training to their employees but maintains a state-certified ambulance and helps us cover the northern portion of our district. There to accept the award for Colowyo was Tanya Stoffle, mine emergency response team coordinator.
Allen reminded everyone attending of the importance of having employers that support the volunteer concept. Allowing employees to leave during business hours is the only way we can continue to have a volunteer organization. Some employers have more than one fireman/EMT employed and this commitment does have an impact on their business. Business owners pay more than their share of taxes but realize what would happen to our taxes if we no longer had a volunteer department and the community had to support a full-time paid department.
Chief Allen introduced Todd Morris, president of the Rio Blanco Fire Protection District board. Todd thanked everyone and talked briefly about the district and the importance of all the members. He then introduced long time EMT-I Deby Merriam. Deby gave a very nice talk about ambulance director Kris Borchard and all that she has done for our department for 25 years. Deby reminded everyone that most of the EMTs practicing today were trained by Kris. She also helps keep many other organizations current on their CPR/First Aid requirements in the community. Kris has been the backbone of the EMS system in Meeker for a long time. She serves on many other committees and councils as well. With a standing ovation from the crowd, Deby presented Kris with a nice plaque.
The rest of the evening was spent dancing and enjoying the live music provided by “Loose Change” from Steamboat Springs and refreshments served by our own Meeker Lions Club.

Special to the Herald TimesMEEKER I The 78th annual fireman’s banquet was held the evening of Saturday, March 12. The Freeman Fairfield Center was decorated very nicely, mostly thanks to Rhawnie McGruder and Melissa Kindall. There was a good turnout again this year. Chief Steve Allen welcomed all in attendance with Bud Miles giving the invocation before the wonderful meal served by Ma Famiglia.Service awards were handed out to EMTs and firemen. This year three firemen received the coveted Honorary Membership Trumpet for 10 years of service: Jake Welle, Laura Smith and Ron Willey.The traditional cutting of the cake by the oldest and youngest fireman was again carried out. This year it was Dick Merriam and Scott Vetter. The lovely cake was again made this year by Vicki Crawford.Steve thanked all the people responsible for helping us do our job each year, including all the dispatchers, law enforcement, BLM, Forest Service, White River Electric and Atmos Energy. And of course, the families that sacrifice because of the time volunteers spend away from home training and responding to calls.This year the Employer of the Year award was presented to Colowyo Coal Co. L.P. for their commitment to the volunteers. Colowyo Coal Co. L.P., not only provide EMS and fire training to their employees but maintains a state-certified ambulance and helps us cover the northern portion of our district. There to accept the award for Colowyo was Tanya Stoffle, mine emergency response team coordinator.Allen reminded everyone attending of the importance of having employers that support the volunteer concept. Allowing employees to leave during business hours is the only way we can continue to have a volunteer organization. Some employers have more than one fireman/EMT employed and this commitment does have an impact on their business. Business owners pay more than their share of taxes but realize what would happen to our taxes if we no longer had a volunteer department and the community had to support a full-time paid department.Chief Allen introduced Todd Morris, president of the Rio Blanco Fire Protection District board. Todd thanked everyone and talked briefly about the district and the importance of all the members. He then introduced long time EMT-I Deby Merriam. Deby gave a very nice talk about ambulance director Kris Borchard and all that she has done for our department for 25 years. Deby reminded everyone that most of the EMTs practicing today were trained by Kris. She also helps keep many other organizations current on their CPR/First Aid requirements in the community. Kris has been the backbone of the EMS system in Meeker for a long time. She serves on many other committees and councils as well. With a standing ovation from the crowd, Deby presented Kris with a nice plaque.The rest of the evening was spent dancing and enjoying the live music provided by “Loose Change” from Steamboat Springs and refreshments served by our own Meeker Lions Club.