By MORGAN MANNS
Fostoria’s firefighters work everyday to serve the community.
And while many would say it’s a thankless job, Fostoria’s fire chief wanted to put recognition where it was due.
Chief Brian Herbert nominated members of his crew for two separate awards for their service and dedication to the community and hard work and quick thinking on the job.
Paramedic Kyle Blausey, firefighter/EMT Harry Miller and Capt. Jerry Goodman were awarded the EMS Star of Life Award for their response to a report of a Fostoria man being struck with an arrow.
Created by the Ohio Chapter of the American College of Emergency Physicians and the Ohio Division of EMS, the award recognizes “outstanding achievements” and honors “those in Ohio’s EMS system whose accomplishments rise above the day-to-day excellence of that system.”
“I want to get the guys the recognition they deserve,” Herbert said. “I want to let the general public know that when they hear the sirens they may think it’s just someone stubbed their toe but a lot of times it’s every day, real-life emergencies and these guys go above and beyond at each call.”
The trio were nominated for their role in the saving of Collin Snyder, who was seriously injured Oct. 22, 2017 when he was accidentally struck by a broadhead hunting arrow while standing in the backyard of his Walnut Street home.
The arrow, fired by a child who was practicing with a target in a neighboring yard, bounced off a nail on a deck, traveled over a fence and lodged itself in both of Snyder’s legs. Reports state the projectile severed the femoral artery in his right leg and also caused damage to the femoral artery in his left leg.
Sgt. Kent Reinbolt and former officer Travis Ricker of Fostoria Police Division, who were also nominated for and received the award, were the first responders to the scene. Goodman, Miller and Blausey arrived just seconds later.
Rapid blood loss caused Snyder to lose consciousness and stop breathing. The crew administered CPR inside the squad and stabilized him by the time they arrived at the emergency room.
Snyder was transported by Fostoria EMS to ProMedica Fostoria Community Hospital, where he was flown by Life Flight to ProMedica Toledo Hospital to undergo emergency surgery.
“It’s not your everyday call that you’re used to,” Herbert said. “There were quick actions by all persons on scene. Obviously a major factor is they were able to save his life.”
According to the EMFTS, the EMS Star of Life Award honors exceptional EMS personnel from Ohio and recognizes Ohio’s emergency medical services system and organizations for a “job well done.”
An award selection panel reviewed each nomination and selected the winners.
Other award categories include EMS Provider of the Year, EMS Agency of the Year, Frank Giampetro Distinguished EMS Educator of the Year and EMS Medical Director of the Year.
The first responders will be recognized during the 18th annual EMS Star of Life Awards Ceremony in Columbus on May 22.
The October incident also got Blausey nominated and chosen for a second award — Owens Community College Alumni Association’s 2018 Outstanding Service Award.
The honor is awarded to an EMT who is dedicated and responsible and exhibits “professional behavior, ingenuity, bravery, special skills or insight to the EMS environment,” according to the nomination form.
“All my guys go above and beyond the call of duty but Kyle seemed to always be there during these unique situations,” Herbert said. “He’s a great paramedic who showed quick thinking and fast response.”
In addition to the October call, Herbert listed a second instance in which he explained why Blausey was deserving of the award.
On Dec. 12, 2017, Blausey, along with Goodman, Lt. Cory Gregg and Lt. Greg Keiser, responded to a report of an unconscious female within the city. Upon arrival, the subject didn’t have a pulse and was apneic. The crew administered CPR and transported the woman, who was pregnant, to ProMedica Fostoria Community Hospital.
Herbert said the entire crew stuck around the hospital and Blausey assisted in the emergency room with patient care for the mother while physicians performed surgery. The patient passed, however, the baby was flown to Toledo and is “making significant improvement everyday.”
“In my opinion, FF/Medic Blausey has shown incredible toughness and skills in both of these (incidences) and many others in the past,” Herbert wrote on his nomination from.
Blausey will be recognized for this award during an award ceremony on April 27 at Owens, which also recognizes other nominees in police/law enforcement officer, firefighter, service to community and community spirit categories.
Herbert said nominating his men for their continual service and dedication to the field and the Fostoria area is something he’d like to do on a regular basis.
“I’m hoping to get the guys the recognition they deserve,” he said. “Doing what they do with the manpower we have and doing it with the care and compassion they show is something worth recognizing.”