14 Honored as CAA Stars of Life


Photo Courtesy of Larry Venus, California State Senate Republican Caucus

California Senate Republican Leader Jean Fuller (R-Bakersfield) recognized fourteen emergency medical services professionals, employed by Hall Ambulance Service, Inc., for their exemplary life-saving performance, dedication and compassionate care delivered to the people of Kern Countyon March 7, 2016.

The recognition was part of the California Ambulance Association’s (CAA) Stars of Life event, which recognized 50 paramedics, EMTs and emergency medical dispatchers from across the state.  Their actions are as varied as their position, but demonstrate they have stood out amongst their peers as the best of the best working in California’s private-ambulance industry.

“These first responders jump into action when we need help and protection. I’m proud to commend and honor these men and women with a Senate resolution for their bravery and commitment to making our community safe. They are some of the best of the best working in our Golden State,” said Senator Fuller.

“The experience for our fourteen Stars of Life to be honored today at the state Capitol and the Senate Resolution commendations presented by Senator Fuller will certainly serve as a milestone in each of their EMS careers,” said Harvey L. Hall, Founder and President of Hall Ambulance Service, Inc. “As first responders, they seldom have the opportunity to reflect on the difference they make each time they respond to someone faced with sudden illness or a traumatic injury.”

Of significant merit are the life-saving, singular acts performed by the following Hall Ambulance Paramedics and EMTs:

  • Paramedic Chris Parks moved quickly to save an infant, in a hospital setting, when the mother alerted him that her baby was not breathing;
  • Paramedic Jason Achterberg and EMTs Adrianna Neal and Enrique Puente, who saved the life of a female who went into sudden cardiac arrest during her own retirement party;
  • Paramedic Mark Gonzcar and EMT Allen Swerdfeger, who came to the aid of a 75 year-old woman who lost consciousness and was turning blue due to choking on a piece of meat that had become lodged in her throat;
  • Paramedics William Jaeger, Eric Castro and EMT David Allard, who saved a local physician they found down on a street corner in cardiac arrest.

Additional honorees were employees recognized at Hall Ambulance Service’s 45th Anniversary Employee Recognition Awards in February, and include Paramedic Charles Brown, President’s Award Recipient; Terry Adams, manager of facilities maintenance, and the recipient of the Founder’s Award; Paramedic of the Year Recipient Keith Kinsella:  EMT of the Year Recipient Sean Tinnish; and Lashika Britton, Emergency Medical Dispatcher of the Year.

During their visit, the fourteen honorees from Hall Ambulance started their day by attending a special legislative briefing, before being presented with their Star of Life medals by the CAA.  They commemorated the occasion by taking a group photo on the steps of the Capitol with the other thirty-six Star of Life recipients.

Assemblyman Rudy Salas and Hall StarsThey then made their way to Senator Fuller’s office, where they received commendations, shared their inspiring stories of how EMS saves lives; and, emphasized the value private-ambulance providers offer as a key component of an effective and efficient health care delivery system.

That afternoon, Assembly member Rudy Salas took the time to meet and thank the Stars of Life for their commitment, and took a picture with them on the Assembly floor.

The day concluded with a reception, followed by an awards dinner at the Embassy Suites Sacramento Riverfront Promenade, located at 100 Capitol Mall, where they received additional recognition for their achievements.

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