Medic, firefighter of year named

The East Fork Fire & Paramedic Districts hosted their 10th annual appreciation and awards banquet at the St. Gall's Parish Hall on May 10 to recognize firefighters and medics of the districts, both career and volunteer, for their efforts in preventing fires and protecting the lives of the citizens of Douglas County.

In addition to the more serious awards presented for firefighter of the year and medic of the year, a lifetime achievement award was also presented to Deputy Fire Chief Bobby Wartgow who will be retiring at the end of July 2008 after more than 26 years of service.

Several members were roasted and some received gag gifts that highlighted their participation during the past year.

The nominations were made by fellow firefighters and medics, both career and volunteer, and were based upon the nominees' contributions to the districts, expertise in the job, and their integrity, honor, professionalism, and enthusiasm.

2007 Firefighter

of the Year

The 2007 Firefighter of the Year award was presented to Volunteer Firefighter/Emergency Medical Technician Becky Bopko with the Sheridan Volunteer Fire Department.

Bopko got her start in the fire service on the East Coast which is where she spent her childhood and the early part of adulthood. She joined a volunteer fire department in 2001 where she was invited to participate in a first call and volunteer program sponsored by the Massachusetts Firefighting Academy.

In 2003 Bopko moved to Nevada where she joined the Sheridan Volunteer Fire Department. She has been an active member ever since and currently holds the rank of captain. In addition to her responses to emergency incidents, she also spends many hours coordinating, teaching, and attending East Fork Fire & Paramedic Districts classes.

In July Bopko will be starting the next phase of her education by attending REMSA's paramedic program.

2007 Medic of the Year

The 2007 Medic of the Year Award was presented to Paramedic/Firefighter Dennis Cote. Cote got his start in the fire service in 2004 when he became a volunteer firefighter with the Gardnerville Volunteer Fire Department. Cote said he knew immediately he wanted to make the fire service a career and, with a lot of determination and hard work, he was hired as a career firefighter with the East Fork Fire & Paramedic Districts in January 2007. Cote completed his paramedic certification with REMSA in May of 2007 and currently works out of Station 14. He lives in Carson Valley with his wife Debbie and his 10 year old daughter Madison.


- Nick Agorastos 20 Year Service

- Allen Anderson 20 Year Service

- John Babcock 20 Year Service

- Margaret Biggs 30 Year Service

- Mark Gonzales 20 Year Service

- Robert Grissom 25 Year Service

- Jesse Hale 20 Year Service

- Michael Hill 20 Year Service

- Paul Hill 20 Year Service

- Robert Lekumberry 20 Year Service

- Greg Marenco 20 Year Service

- Gale Maynor 20 Year Service

- Rich Nalder 30 Year Service

- David Norvell 20 Year Service

- Gary Powers 20 Year Service

- Don Southwick 30 Year Service

- Bob Spellberg 20 Year Service

- Michael Warne 20 Year Service

- Bobby Wartgow 25 Year Service

Other awards presented:

Safest Station Genoa VFD

Cleanest Station Fish Springs VFD


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