by Tim Cavender
Forty-seven new fire recruits graduated from Cherokee County Fire and Emergency Services’ firefighter recruit school during ceremonies held Saturday at the Woodstock First Baptist Church. The event began with an invocation by Fire Chaplain, Don Williams, followed by the presentation of colors by the Cherokee County Fire Explorer Post #469 and the singing of the national anthem by Jedidiah Martin.
Before the presentation of the certificates of completion, a slideshow was shown and gifts were presented to some of the fire training officers by class spokespersons, Anthony Ciorba and Kelsey Millsaps.
Four special achievement awards were presented to three members of the recruit class. The W. Clark Waters’ Jr. Honor Graduate Award was presented to Tyler Russell. The award was named on behalf of Clark Waters, a Cherokee County firefighter, who passed away in 2004. The recipient of the Pinnacle Award for striving to “reach the top” due to dedication and hard-work in the firefighter recruit school class was presented to Beau Witcher. The Star of Life Award in honor of Dr. Jill Mabley, who is currently the Medical Director for the fire department, was presented to Alex Hart and Kevin McArthur was presented with the Academic Award.
Assistant Fire Chief, Eddie Robinson, came forward and congratulated the new recruits and welcomed them to the Cherokee County Fire family. Cherokee County Fire Chief, Tim Prather, came to the podium to say a few words then asked the recruits to stand for the firefighter oath and the presentation of their certificates of completion.
Those recruits receiving certificates were: Conner Bourn, Matthew Brooks, Desmond Chavarria, Anthony Ciorba, Aubrey Clark, Asheton Collins, Amanda DeWoody, Tate Dill, Bonn Ellerbee, Jonathan Escobar, Jeffery Garrett, Joseph Gates, Alfonso Gavina, Evan Groet, William Hamby, Alex Hart, Matthew Hickey, Cameron Hubbard, Chance Huffschmidt, Christopher LaFontaine, Ryan Laughridge, Jonathan Laurich, Henry Le, Trenton Mackey, Brian Magill, Sean Markham, Kevin McArthur, Kelsey Millsaps, Tyler Morgan, Matthew Mosely, Jacob Murphy, Grant Newton, Nevin O’Hearn, Austin Owen, Tyler Russell, David Scalf, Christopher Shorts, Caleb Smalley, Benjamin Smith, Lucas Vasquez, Timothy Vickery, Scott Ward, Alex Weaver, Heath Weekly, Mason Williams, Beau Witcher, and Michael Zuchegno.