Chesterfield Fire and EMS on Oct. 6 recognized many of its members for heroic acts performed in the line of duty, but something unique and rare also took place, three Chesterfield citizens received Medals of Valor for acts of heroism in saving a life. A Medal of Valor is rarely presented. To earn this award the life of the rescuer has to be on the line, while performing the rescue.
The ceremony began with David Tesh as Master of Ceremonies, the Presentation of Colors, invocation by Chaplain Ronald S. Woody, then comments followed by The Honorable Steve Elswick, Chairman of Chesterfield Board of Supervisors, who was then followed by Bill Dupler who filled in for Jay Stegmaier and Fire Chief Edward L. Senter,Jr.
A memorial service was conducted by Captain Gerald Pruden in memory of fallen firefighters. At this time, two portraits, one of Joseph Sullivan and one of Patrick Mason, both who lost their lives in the Line of Duty, were unveiled.
Edgar A. Martindale, IV of Chester Volunteer Fire Department (Now Chesterfield County Station 1) was named Volunteer Firefighter of the Year.
The three citizen Medals of Valor were presented to: Dr. Matthew R. Bartholomew for rescuing a citizen trapped in a vehicle in a retention pond in the Midlothian area, and Orville P. Stone III and Michael J. Williams for rescuing a citizen from a burning vehicle.
In June of 2015, Beach Road, a vehicle was on fire with the driver trapped. Stone and Williams came upon the scene and proceeded to attempt to remove the trapped occupant. The heat and unrelenting flames beat them back, but they again attempted a rescue, this time succeeding in removing the victim. About a minute after the rescuers pulled the victim from the vehicle, fire erupted totally engulfing the vehicle.
Firefighter Timothy Meadows received a special commendation for assisting in a rescue in Cumberland County, while off-duty.
Other awards presented included, 17 Lifesave awards, 16-Unit Lifesave awards and 3-Unit citations.
The event was held at The Victory Tabernacle Church of God on Genito Road.