09/28/12 667 W, 2 I - + 14 - 8 Responders, Photographers (!) Honored at Appreciation Breakfast

At the Angus Barn this morning, Raleigh and Wake County first responders were honored at the fifth annual First Responder Appreciation Breakfast. Hosted by the Greater Raleigh Chamber and sponsored by a number of businesses, the event recognized and honored the efforts of fire, law enforcement, emergency medical, and emergency communication agencies, including Wake County EMS, the Wake County Sheriff’s Office, the Raleigh-Wake County Emergency Communications Center, the Raleigh Fire Department, the Raleigh Police Department, and Troop C, District III of the North Carolina State Highway Patrol. Click to enlarge:

Raleigh/Wake County Emergency Communications Center Director Barry Furey (shown above) provided the keynote speech, and spoke eloquently (and humorously) about the men and women who do the work of emergency services. Hero of the Year nominees were introduced from the above agencies, and moving stories were told of their dedicated work. Such as the State Trooper who stopped a wrong-way vehicle on the Beltline, and who subsequently named Hero of the Year.  (An earlier version of this posting incorrectly identified the winner as Raleigh/Wake ECC nominee was Call Taker Heather Corbett. She was a nominee, and the state's 911 employee of the year, as this WRAL story noted.)

Also receiving an award, were citizen photographers (and more) Mike Legeros and Lee Wilson. (And with Yours Truly seated at a VIP table down front. Yikes.) They received this year's Friends of First Responder award, as presented by Marty Clayton of Progress Energy. He read a short statement about the pair, which is included below. [ Read that, then come back here. ] Thank you as always, my friends, for the pleasure and privilege of serving those who serve. You're a good family to be part of. Click to enlarge:

Here are Mr. Clayton's remarks:

Lee Wilson and Mike Legeros are local fixtures of emergency services in Raleigh and Wake County. They are citizen enthusiasts who have official roles in recording and documenting the activities of fire, police, and emergency medical services. They’re official roles include Raleigh Fire Department incident and event photographers, and exclusive members of the Wake County EMS photo unit.

With over 2,000 first responders in Wake County and a growing population near a million, emergency services stay busy, and Mike and Lee stay busy as they tell the stories of firefighters, law officers, and paramedics. Their photos are made available to responders, and can be viewed online by the general public. They serve as valuable training tools, provide shared experiences for the responder community, and help educate the public about responders and what they do.

Mike Legeros is a lifelong fire buff, and has been a scene photographer for over ten years. Much of his work captures firefighters and paramedics in Raleigh, as he chases calls at night or on weekends. (By day, he works at a software company in Cary, on a web team.)

In addition to his photography, Mike is the official historian of the Raleigh Fire Department, and president of the Raleigh Fire Museum, a relatively new charitable organization.  (He's also a former Raleigh firefighter, and worked for the department for a few years out of college, twenty years ago.)

Mike has a popular web site and also a blog that’s a source for news and information about local emergency services. He’s also the author of two photo histories of Raleigh and Wake County fire departments, and has researched and documented fire history statewide.

Lee Wilson has been taking pictures as emergency scenes for nearly twenty years. He’s attended nearly every major fire in the Capital City, and is well-known around Wake County.  On any given week or weekend, Lee might be at a live burn with Stony Hill, an open house in Garner, or taking pictures of fire apparatus in Fuquay-Varina.

Lee is also a friend to firefighters throughout the Triangle, and is known in many fire departments throughout North Carolina.


Are you going to post the pictures from this event?

ncnjems - 09/30/12 - 09:29

And I will say once again —- Well deserved for you both!
Tim B - 10/01/12 - 12:20

Remember personal info?

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