Brooke Pankonin | Johnson Publications

Grant firefighters and EMTs present at the annual banquet on Saturday, April 1 include (front row, l-r): Don Softley, Jason Noyes, Casandra Cockerill, Chasity Knoles, Bob Tatum, Rick Dreiling and Rick Ochsner. Back row: Matt Deaver, Ben Francisco, Scott King, Shawn Wiebe, Fred Reichert, Roger Friesen, Brent Deaver, Gerald Hostetler, Dwight Wiebe, Chod Briggs and Brandon Lampmann. 

Brooke Pankonin | Johnson Publications

The top ten responders included (l-r): Rick Dreiling, Rick Ochsner, Jason Noyes, Fred Reichert, Matt Deaver and Don Softley. Not pictured: Bob Hochstein, Brionne Griffin, Dalton Zimmerman and Bob Tatum. 

Firefighters and EMTs honored

By Brooke Pankonin

Grant Tribune Sentinel

Members of the Grant Volunteer Fire Department and Perkins County Ambulance gathered at the Legion Hall for their annual banquet on Saturday, April 1. 

After a meal served by the Perkins County Youth Development Club, Chief Don Softley made introductions and reviewed the 2016 year. 

The year was the fourth busiest in the 126-year history, with 231 calls for fire and ambulance combined. The busiest year on record was 2007 with 276 calls. Fire incidents totaled 39 and ambulance calls reached 192, with 55 of those being long distance transfers. 

March was the busiest month in 2016, with a total of 34 calls, the busiest March the department has ever had. 

Service hours by volunteers numbered 1,431, and training hours totaled 1,277. 

The volunteer recognized for the most responses was Rick Ochsner with 171. Other top ten responders included Bob Tatum, Fred Reichert, Bob Hochstein, Softley, Rick Dreiling, Dalton Zimmerman, Brionne Griffin, Matt Deaver and Jason Noyes. 

Ochsner was also honored with perfect attendance at meetings for the fifth consecutive year. 

Ole and Rochelle Sihm of Ag-Land Aviation were recognized and honored with a plaque for the continuous commitment and contributions given to the emergency services of the community. 

Members recognized for serving five years included Zimmerman, Hochstein and Gerald Hostetler. 

Grant firefighters and EMTs include Softley, chief; Reichert, assistant chief; Dreiling, senior fire captain; Tatum, ambulance captain; Bryan Kroeker, fire captain/president; Noyes, fire captain; Dwight Wiebe, fire lieutenant/vice president; Matt Deaver, secretary; Hochstein, fire lieutenant/treasurer; Hostetler, ambulance lieutenant; Chasity Knoles, Shawn Wiebe and Scott King, board of directors; Chod Briggs, Casandra Cockerill, Analisa Colglazier, Brent Deaver, Ben Francisco, Roger Friesen, Griffin, Brandon Lampmann, John Pick, Ochsner, Weston Tolander. 

The Grant Tribune-Sentinel

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