A night for honouring firefighters

The Kelowna Fire Department hosted its inaugural Fire Chief Officer’s Reception and Awards Ceremony Wednesday night.

The Kelowna Fire Department hosted its inaugural Fire Chief Officer’s Reception and Awards Ceremony at the Rotary Centre for the Arts on Wednesday, Nov. 23.

Two special awards capped off an evening organized to recognize milestone achievements by members of the KFD and welcome new recruits to the department.

“It is important that we pause occasionally to celebrate the career achievements and say thank you to the firefighters for their diligence and commitment,” said Fire Chief Jeff Carlisle.

“These firefighters devote their working lives to protecting citizens of Kelowna and we want them to know we value their efforts.”

The evening ended with special presentations to Kris Rainey, a paid on-call member of the Kelowna Fire Department.

For his actions during a shooting incident Aug. 14 on Water Street,  Rainey was presented with the B.C. Medal of Bravery from the Office of the Fire Commissioner and a Commanding Officer’s Commendation from the RCMP.

Rainey was jogging past the scene when the shooting occurred.

He stopped southbound traffic on Water Street and notified the casino doorman to keep people inside before carefully approaching the scene.

He was one of two people to tend to the three shooting victims and stayed with them until the RCMP determined the scene to be clear for medical first responders to take over care of the victims.

Fire and emergency management commissioner Becky Delinger presented Rainey with the B.C. Medal of Bravery.

Kelowna RCMP Supt. Bill McKinnon presented the Detachment Commander’s Certificate.

Other dignitaries at the ceremony were Kelowna Mayor Sharon Shepherd, Kelowna city manager Ron Mattiussi, City of Kelowna general manager Paul Macklem and KFD chaplain Phil Collins.

The ceremony also included presentations to KFD members for exemplary service.

Seven firefighters received the Federal Exemplary Medal for 20 years of fire service. The Exemplary Bar for 30 years of fire service was presented to two members.

One firefighter received the Provincial Long Service Medal for 25 years of service and the Provincial Long Service Bar was given to four members for 35 years of service.

City of Kelowna service awards were presented to 11 KFD members for reaching 10, 15, 20 and 25 years of service.

The fire department also honoured 10 new graduates of the Fire Officer program and officially welcomed the 16 employees who joined the department in 2011.