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Honoring Valor and Service
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Honoring Valor and Service

Chamber recognizes Mount Vernon police, fire.

The fire trucks from Penn Daw and Mount Vernon were in the parking lot at the Springfield Hilton during the awards ceremony.

The fire trucks from Penn Daw and Mount Vernon were in the parking lot at the Springfield Hilton during the awards ceremony. Photo by Mike Salmon.

— When Officer Carlos Lama helped the fire and rescue operations at a burning

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Mount Vernon area firefighters Mike Fischer, John “JD” Leary, Carlos Solomon, Jason Roberts, and Chief Richard Bower, middle, were among those recognized.

apartment complex in Kingstowne back in 2004, it was just one of the several points in his police career that added up to recognition by the Mount Vernon-Lee Chamber of Commerce on Friday, Nov. 18 at the Hilton in Springfield.

The apartment fire still stays with him. “The flames engulfed it pretty much, we helped carry a lot of people to the ambulance,” he said.

Lama, an officer at the Mount Vernon Police Station, was being awarded by the chamber for Supervisor of the Year. Other police department awardees included Mike Fischer, Captain of the Year; Nicholas Shivley, Officer of the Year; Marvin Goodley, Detective of the Year; Rick Lopez, Auxiliary Police Officer of the Year; and Station Logistics Technician Michael Jessee.

The police station officers were honored at the event alongside with officers

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The Mount Vernon High School choir provides music for the honor guard.

from the Mount Vernon Fire Department and emergency response officers from Fort Belvoir.

“We are delighted to welcome our elected officials, police, emergency medical personnel, firefighters and their families to this community celebration of dedication, valor and service,” said Scott Stroh, the chamber president.

On the stage were Supervisor Dan Storck (D-Mt. Vernon); Supervisor Jeff McKay (D-Lee); Lt. Col. James Matheson, Commander of Fort Belvoir; Col. Edwin C. Rossler, Fairfax County Police Chief; Chief Richard Bower of the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue; and other officials. The event was emceed by Jonathan Elias, an ABC network newsperson, who interjected a little humor over the course of the evening to relieve tension, he said. Elias grew up with parents in the military and police. “I’ve always had an affinity for police and fire, hats off to you,” he said.

The Fairfax County Public Safety Honor Guard kicked off the event with the colors, and the Viva Voces, the advanced Women’s Choir from Mount Vernon

“It’s important to recognize individuals that make public safety a priority.”

— Francis Mensah, member, Public Safety Honor Guard

High School sang the national anthem among other patriotic songs. “It’s important to recognize individuals that make public safety a priority,” said Francis Mensah, a member of the Public Safety Honor Guard for 22 years.

This sentiment was felt on the stage too. “It’s a great feeling, it means even more when you’re recognized by your peers,” said Lama.

2017 Police and Firefighters Tribute Awardees

By the Mount Vernon-Lee Chamber of Commerce

Mount Vernon area Fire and Rescue:

  • Captain Mike Fischer, Company Officer of the Year

  • John “JD” Leary, Meritorious Service Award

  • Carlos Solomon, EMT/Medic of the Year

  • Jason Roberts, Firefighter of the Year

Mount Vernon Police:

  • Nicholas Shively, Police Officer of the Year

  • Carlos Lama, Supervisor of the Year

  • Marvin Goodley, Detective of the Year

  • Rick Lopez, Auxiliary Police Officer of the Year

  • Michael Jessee, Meritorious Service Award Station Logistics

Fort Belvoir Fire and Police:

  • Christopher Craft, Company Officer of the Year

  • Andrew Funk, Firefighter Medic

  • Jonathan Lang, Firefighter of the Year

  • Steven Kinchen, Police Department Supervisor of the Year

  • Christian J. McCreary, Traffic Investigator of the Year

  • Dewitt Parker, Patrol Officer of the Year

  • Alicia Handy, Detective of the Year

  • Paul J Arney, Army Security Supervisor of the Year

  • Sean Murphy, Army Security Guard of the Year

Franconia Police:

  • Martin Russell, Police Officer of the Year

  • Phillip Edwards, Detective of the Year

  • Alice Eggers, Meritorious Service Award

  • Athena Caul, Auxiliary Police Officer of the Year

  • Jonathan Nytes, Supervisor of the Year