The LaGrange Optimist Club recognized local response agencies for playing a big role in the community.
George Moore, Optimist Club member, chaired the ceremony to acknowledge the people who serve our community.
“There have been so many tragedies in the world and these people respond to those and deserve to be recognized for that,” said Moore.
The club presented awards to local fire departments, sheriff’s office and police department.
Sheriff James Woodruff thanked the Optimist Club for recognizing public safety before he presented the award to Major Charles Nixon for deputy of the year.
“It’s so many deserving people in the work force it’s hard to pick out one person,” said Woodruff. “I appreciate him for going above and beyond his normal duties.”
Nixon has 25 years in law enforcement and became a Troup County deputy 1989. He is a member of dive team, has coordinated the sheriff’s car show for four years and has held the position of corporal, lieutenant, captain, chief investigator and was promoted to major of operations this year.
Chief of Public Safety Lou Dekmar thanked Moore for his involvement in recognizing law enforcement and response agencies.
“I get to work with people that are ordinary but are called are called upon to do extraordinary things,” said Dekmar referencing his work with the LaGrange Fire Department and LaGrange Police Department. “Even though they are called to serve people for a brief moment of time their service is remembered by that person for the rest of their lives.
LaGrange Fire department Sgt. Paramedic Johnathan Williamson introduced William Brazell as firefighter and paramedic of the year.
Williamson noted that Brazell is an honor graduate in his rookie school, has had no sick time, no tardiness, has completed all of his goals, a member of cross fit gym, has ranked 1,011 out of 20,000 in the southeastern region and the list goes on.
“I just love what I do, and this is just a bonus,” said Brazell after receiving his award.
Sgt. Robert Kirby of Criminal Investigation Section for the LaGrange Police Department introduced Officer of the Year Detective Chris Pritchett.
“We’ve taken some bad people off the streets thanks to Chris’ work,” said Kirby. “He has done a lot for our department and he is very much appreciated. “
Pritchett started with the LPD in 2003 as patrol officer then was promoted to detective after four years. He is a member of the Internet Crimes Against Children task force and is the department’s crime analyst.
“It’s been a pleasure working for the LPD and I look forward to retiring in the next 15 years,” said Pritchett.
Captain Early Harris and Ltd. Jeb Howington of the Troup County Fire Department described their firefighter of the year recipient, Chris May, as a dependable and focused firefighter.
“He’s the most dependable person you will ever meet in your life,” said Howington. “He keeps the station so clean I wish he lived at my house. He’ll be the first one to check the equipment and tell us what we need. He keeps us on our toes.”
Optimist Club president, Scott Cook, closed the ceremony by thanking the agencies for all their hard work.
“We appreciate all you all do,” said Cook. “You all don’t get thanks nearly as much as you deserve. It’s nice to be able to honor people who don’t get honored enough, or as much as they deserve.”