Responders deserve thanks, honors

Our communities are fortunate to have so many dedicated first responders keeping us safe. Each year brings an opportunity to thank a few of those men and women, at the annual award luncheon presented by the Muskingum Valley Beverly-Waterford Chamber of Commerce and the Sons of the American Revolution.

Honorees this year were Officer Dustin Young, of the Marietta Police Department; Firefighter Robert Davidson, of the Marietta Fire Department; Deputy Alyssa McConnell, of the Washington County Sheriff’s Office; Little Hocking Volunteer Fire Department Assistant Chief Wayne Mulligan; Little Hocking Volunteer Fire Department Chief Mike Chevalier; and Belpre Police Chief Terry Williams.

As is often the case with the kinds of people who devote their lives to service, many of the honorees gave credit to others, in accepting their awards.

“There always seems to be a call right at dinner … or when you are ready to go somewhere,” said Mulligan. “My wife Janet deserves a lot of the credit.”

“I’d like to give thanks to my brothers and sisters in law enforcement and EMS,” said Williams.

“I want to thank Sheriff Mincks for giving me the chance to transition from the jail to patrol … and believing in me and pushing me through,” McConnell said.

No doubt there HAS been an army of others supporting those on the front lines day in and day out. But but for sheer integrity, bravery and dedication to tackling a dangerous and unpredictable job so the rest of us can have peace of mind, we give thanks to this year’s honorees.