The Kern County Fire Department will honor the following fire fighters and community members at a ceremony Friday that is open to the public:
MEDAL OF MERIT
• Engineer Heriberto “Eddie” Martinez for helping to develop the KCFD Honor Guard and leading as commander.
• Ridgecrest Police Department Officers Cory Ballestero and Ricardo Garibay for rescuing a man from a house fire in Ridgecrest.
• Community member Seaona Butz for rescuing her family members from a house fire in Derby Acres.
• California Highway Patrol Officers Ryan Love and Angele Vega for rescuing a woman from a burning car after a vehicle accident near Mettler.
• Community member Andres Luna for saving the life of a man in cardiac arrest by providing CPR at a restaurant in Buttonwillow.
FIRE DISPATCHER OF THE YEAR
• Dispatcher Tracey Halvorson for excellent performance in public safety dispatching.
EMERGENCY MEDICAL DISPATCHER OF THE YEAR
• Dispatcher Tracey Halvorson for excellent performance in emergency medical dispatching.
• Engine Company 64 — Captain Greg Sanchez, Engineer Corey Wilford, and Firefighter Zachary Geissel for rescuing a man from a house fire in Oildale.
• Engine Company 74 — Captain Thomas Nicoll, Engineer Brian Allen and Firefighter Ryder White for rescuing a family from the Erskine Fire as it burned through its Southlake neighborhood.
LETTER OF COMMENDATION
Emergency Communications Center Staff — Supervising Dispatcher Christy Shaff; Dispatchers Stephanie Cifuentes, Joshua Luchau, Jolene Perman, Zachary Regan; Battalion Chief Michael Slayton; and Expanded Dispatchers Pricilla Hinojosa and Carol DeSilva for exemplary performance during the Erskine Fire.
• Captain Ira Peshkin for his service in coordinating KCFD’s wildland fire training and qualifications program.
• Battalion Chief David Witt for his service to the KCFD Air and Wildland Division.
GOOD SAMARITAN AWARD
• Community member Dusty Coughran for assisting residents and firefighters during the Erskine Fire.
• Red Rooster Café — owners Taurino and Candice Aguilar, staff, and neighbors for voluntarily feeding hundreds of people in the community during the Erskine Fire.
The awards ceremony will be 6 p.m. Friday at the Kern County Administrative Center Board of Supervisors Chambers, 1115 Truxtun Ave. in Bakersfield.