From left: Fire Commander Jair Tromp, retiring fireman Alvin Brown, and St. Eustatius Fire Chief Andre Bennett.
ST. EUSTATIUS–Former and present fire personnel of the St. Eustatius Fire Department were recognised Monday evening at a ceremony held in their honour. The firefighters were honoured for their achievements and upgrading over this past year.
Fire Commander for Bonaire, Statia and Saba Jair Tromp said he was very proud of his staff for their achievements. He also commended them for their hard work and professionalism.
He said four members of the Fire Department were trained this year in driving the fire trucks.
Statia’s Fire Chief Andre Bennett commended retiring fireman Alvin Brown, who has served diligently for over 30 years. “He will be missed,” Bennett said.
Brown’s main role at the Fire Department was to drive the fire trucks. “He has trained almost every fireman in driving the fire truck,” Bennett said.
During the Fire Department’s exams in November, Brown drove the fire truck during the practical testing phase as a special favour.
Brown thanked the Fire Chief for inviting him to drive the truck and offered his services to the Fire Department in case they would need a driver in the future.
On behalf of Francisco Philip, Olton Berkel of NuStar’s Emergency Response Team said the certificates the firefighters were going to receive were in reward for their hard work and efforts. “Any great company knows that their employees are their number-one asset. This ceremony tonight is a testimony to the continued development of firefighters,” Berkel said in commending the leaders of the Caribbean Netherlands Fire Department.
“Our world of emergency response is one where split-second decisions can mean the difference between life and death. When that emergency situation arises, it is their training the firefighters fall back on to see them through.”
Berkel congratulated the firefighters on a job well done and urged them to look out for any opportunity to keep upgrading themselves.
Former firefighters were also honoured during the ceremony. After the speeches the Fire Department enjoyed dinner, followed by a gift-giving ceremony.