WORCESTER, MASS. (WHDH) - Gov. Charlie Baker, Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito, and Public Safety Secretary Terrence M. Reidy on Tuesday joined State Fire Marshal Peter J. Ostroskey to honor firefighters from 14 Massachusetts fire departments at the 32nd annual Firefighter of the Year Awards ceremony, held at Worcester’s Mechanics Hall.

“These awards recognize acts of bravery and dedication that are remarkable even by the high standard set for Massachusetts firefighters,” Baker said in a statement. “Through their courage, compassion, and commitment to helping others no matter the risk to themselves, the men and women we honor today represent the very best of the fire service.”

Baker, Secretary Reidy, and State Fire Marshal Ostroskey presented six medals of valor, six individual awards for meritorious service, six group awards for meritorious service, one Norman Knight Award for Excellence in Community Service, and one Stephen D. Coan Fire Marshal’s Award.

The awards and recipients are as follows:

Medals of Valor

Carver Lieutenant Christopher J. Mahoney
New Bedford Firefighter Paul Medeiros
Saugus Firefighter Greg Cinelli
Somerville Lieutenant Danielle O’Hearn
Springfield Firefighter George Vasquez
Worcester Firefighter Jon Paul Paige

Individual Awards for Meritorious Conduct

Attleboro Firefighter/Paramedic Nicholas W. Sheehan
Brewster Firefighter/Paramedic Gretchen Riley
Harwich Firefighter Josh Ford
Kingston Firefighter Christopher J. Veracka
Lynnfield Firefighter/EMT Nicholas M. Holmes
Sutton Fire Chief Matthew Belsito

Group Awards for Meritorious Conduct

Brockton – Lieutenant Benjamin Denny, Lieutenant James W. DuBeau Jr., Firefighter Christian Bugbee, Firefighter Paul Jones, Firefighter Corey Lacey, Firefighter Edward J. Lee III, Firefighter Robert Orcutt, and Firefighter Alexander Warren
Dartmouth Fire District 1 – Captain Ryan Cabral and Lieutenant Ryan P. Snell
New Bedford – Captain Kurt Houghton, Lieutenant Louis Miranda, Firefighter Eric Britto, Firefighter Andrew R. Coderre, Firefighter Darien Jacintho, Firefighter Kenneth Letourneau, Firefighter Paul Medeiros, and Firefighter Manuel Mota, Jr.
Saugus – Captain Chris Vinard, Firefighter Sean Bohannon, and Firefighter Greg Cinelli
Somerville – Deputy Chief Michael Anzalone, Lieutenant Thomas Bellini, Lieutenant Danielle O’Hearn, Firefighter Christopher Carroll, Firefighter Charles Conway, Firefighter Ryan M. Epps, Firefighter Douglas Henry, Firefighter Alex Massiah, Firefighter John O’Connor, and Firefighter Mark Wall
Springfield – Firefighter Jonathan Shea and Firefighter George Vasquez

Norman Knight Award for Excellence in Community Service

New Bedford Firefighter Bryce Fortes

Stephen D. Coan Fire Marshal Award

Department of Fire Services Public Information Officer (Retired) Jennifer Mieth

Since their inception in 1990, the Firefighter of the Year Awards have grown from a simple ceremony to the premier annual event for the Massachusetts fire service, honoring truly remarkable acts of courage, service, and sacrifice by the Commonwealth’s firefighters and recognizing their invaluable contributions to the communities they serve.

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