An annual event, this year’s edition of the Escalon Consolidated Fire Protection District Appreciation Dinner was staged on Friday night, May 18 at the Azores Band Hall.
Along with a social hour, the evening also featured a catered dinner, a video presentation chronicling some of the fire department responses during the year put together by Firefighter Ryan Burr, some comments from Fire Chief Rick Mello and special service pins and awards.
“We do a lot with a little,” Chief Mello told the crowd, noting that though the staff is small, they are supported by volunteers and reserves and just arrive on the scene of the call and do the job.
Among those recognized during the evening was Tina Van Houten, who recently retired after 33 years of service with Escalon Community Ambulance. She was presented with a special proclamation by Mello in honor of her retirement.
Board of Directors members Joe Camara, Steve Reichmuth and Mickey Schilber were in attendance and recognized. Unable to attend were directors Josh Cummings and Andy Dugo.
Staff at the department includes Chief Mello, Battalion Chiefs Terry Pinheiro, Joe Pelot and Chris Johnson, with firefighters Moises Silva, Cassidy Bohannon and Ryan Burr, with administrative assistant Catherine Johns. Making up the volunteers and reserves are Jennifer Cannon, Joe Camara, Anthony Castillo, Connor Coker, Wyatt Dias, Rigoberto Fonseca, Fabricio Gallo, Ron Gur, Veronica Moreno, Jordan Palmer, Clay Ruddy, Ryan Strasser, Jacob Tietjen, Cody Trapp and David Velasco.
Palmer, who was not able to attend, was recognized for five years of service to the department, as was Cannon. Burr received his 15-year service pin.