The Joppa-Magnolia Volunteer Fire Company held its 57th annual installation of officers and awards banquet Saturday.
Several members were honored, new positions were taken and one longtime member was named Fireman of the Year.
Director of the Cecil County Department of Emergency Services Richard Brooks was emcee for the event, which was dedicated to members who died last year.
Company historian Lewis A. Brown Jr. was presented the coveted award of Joppa-Magnolia Volunteer Fireman of The Year.
Brown said the award, voted by the company's general body in November, was a complete surprise. No one told him until that night that he was this year's recipient.
"Nobody told me, not even my girlfriend," he said Wednesday.
A life member and past chief, Brown has been a member of the company for 41 years and was instrumental in organizing the Joppa-Magnolia Volunteer Fire Company 60th anniversary banquet in September. He also was chair of the renovations project to House 2.
As historian, he takes and organizes numerous photos and is writing a history of the company.
Kevin Thomas was awarded as the top fire responder, with 723 calls. The fire company responded to 1,279 calls last year.
Brown said Thomas is "very dedicated to the fire company," and comes from a long line of fire service members, including his mother, who was a firefighter. His father, Bob Thomas, a spokesperson for Harford County Government, is a veteran fire inspector and worked in the state fire marshal's office for many years.
Rounding out the top 10 fire responders are Tom Harrington, 541 calls; Tyler Colvin Jr., 537; Erik Petersen, 517; D'Angelo Holmes, 492; Tony Colvin Sr., 462; Mike Shiflett, 458; Chris Merk, 429; Greg Hanzlik, 428; and Kyle Kamberger, 419.
Top EMS responder, Rich Jagat, responded to 139 of the company's 3,439 EMS calls last year. Following him were Danny Adkins, 133; Robert Russell, 92; Ryan Barrow, 90; Jason Bosley, 90; Mark Hagley, 81; Mike McArdle, 81; John Cannon, 69; Stephanie Leader, 68; and Joe Burrs, 66.
The top 10 Ladies Auxiliary responders, which are measured in points, were Chris Cornes, 378; Anna Jonske, 354; Linda Younger, 307; Betty Byrne, 236; Georgette Swartel'e, 192; Susan Derlunas, 190; Millie Henning, 189; Amber Wainwright, 161; Margaret Bullock, 160; and Christiane Roscoe, 135.
Brown said the ladies auxiliary responders earn a point for every three hours of service they put in. Like many of the members, he believes each of the ladies most likely worked more than the hours they logged.
This year, the fire company started a new tradition, with the Edgar M. Williams Award, named after the late life member.
Mr. Williams was Joppa-Magnolia's first elected president in 1952 and was key to starting the company's ambulance service in 1953.
It was this dedicated work that earned Mr. Williams the Dr. Howard M. Bubert Award for an act of heroism in saving a life in 1959.
The first recipients of the award in Mr. Williams' honor are Lena Brown, Fred Causey and EMS Captain Danny Adkins responding on Medic 892; and John Terrell, Fire Captain Adam Sennett and Kevin Thomas responding on Utility 871 for a call on Oct. 30 in the Box 806 area.
For a call on Nov. 16 in the Box 826 area, those awarded responding on Medic 891 were Jessica Morawski, Bernie Wesolowski Marcia Barben Paramedic, EMS Chief Ryan Barrow and EMS Captain Danny Adkins.