ALPENA - Tim Moggie and Lee Srebnik, paid on-call/EMT/firefighters, recently received awards from the Alpena Township Board of Trustees and their peers. Moggie received a distinguished medal of honor and Srebnik was awarded firefighter of the year. However, both recipients agreed it's not about the individual, but the whole team.
"We have an awesome set of leadership within the department, which includes the officers and up to the township board," Srebnik said. "The board plays a huge role in the fire department and the changes we've gone through to help us grow."
Srebnik said some of the biggest changes within the department recently occurred. He said the department started off with 120 runs per year and increased to 1,700 runs because of an increase in transports and becoming licensed EMTs.
"It's a lot busier now. We've become a basic life support unit," Moggie said. "It's our first year with such a high amount of increased runs due to transports and becoming licensed EMTs."
Moggie said changes have been made to the fire department, particularly based on medical and EMS aspects of what the north and south side fire departments train for to assist the community.
"It's a whole team effort," Srebnik said. "I feel blessed to be on the Alpena Township fire department and serving its citizens."
While Moggie primarily serves the south side department, and Srebnik the north side, they agreed the fire departments work collaboratively, along with the city and law enforcement when needed.
"I consider it an honor to help people in need. They can trust us to come in and practice what we've been taught and our EMS skills," Srebnik said. "We have a great team of firefighters on our department. I believe they all work hard and do the best they can, it creates teamwork."
Srebnik, who has 18 years of experiences (5 1/2 years with Alpena Township Fire Department) was nominated as firefighter of the year by officers and fire administrator Marie Twite, based on his yearly performance and involvement in the department.
"It was not expected, I was shocked by it. It's been a humbling experience for me," Srebnik said.
Moggie was awarded a distinguished medal of honor for his 36 years of service (25 with the township fire department), and for his life-saving efforts, reviving an occupant of a car accident, and assisting a man trapped on the second floor of a burning house.
"I was totally surprised. I'm in the same boat as Lee, I had no idea this was happening," Moggie said. "This is something we just do, we've been trained to do this, and help the public."
Emily Siegmon can be reached via e-mail at email@example.com or by phone at 358-5687.