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Two Firemen Honored

Photo by: B.J. Green

What would we do if they weren’t there? I am referring to our firefighters who risk their lives not only fighting fires but everything else they are asked to do. Imagine you have a fire at your house with no one to call. We take it for granted that the Fire Department will respond to our call. These guys, and in some cases gals, are asked to respond to heart attack calls, to car wrecks, to gas leaks, train derailments and, oh yes, fires 24-7-365. They responded January 3rd in Quincy to a house fire and rescued 3 year old Baby Ella Cain to save her life. The two firefighters who actually did that rescue were Justin Twaddle and Lieutenant Eric Becks. Both were awarded the State of Illinois’ Highest honor for a firefighter, the Firefighter Medal of Honor today in a ceremony at the Prairie Capital Convention Center in Springfield, Illinois. It’s a facility that has seen its share of sporting heroes but today’s honor would top all of those combined. Both of these men represent the first ever recipients from the Quincy Fire Department of this honor from the Office of the Illinois State Fire Marshal. I have not spoken to either of these men, but I can almost guarantee that both were proud to be recipients but also humbled enough to realize that without the other firefighters assistance that night they would not have been able to do what they did. We cannot take what they do for granted. Just getting to the scene of a fire or accident puts them in jeopardy of getting injured or killed. For Firefighters Becks and Twaddle, thanks for what you do. For the other firefighters in the City of Quincy, thanks for what you do. You are all heroes and I for one are very glad you are here. I don’t need to ask the Cain family if they are happy that the Q.F.D. is here. I already know that answer.

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