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Lansing Fire Department 2019 OfficersFrom left, Director of Tompkins County Emergency Lee Shurtleff swears in Lansing's 2019 officers: Chief Scott Purcell, Deputy Chief Brad George, Asst. Chief Todd Mix, Asst. Chief Joe Lisi, Captain Josh Nalley, Lieutenant Nelson Golden, and Lieutenant Gary Brooker.

One night a year, when you call 911 the Cayuga Heights Fire Department responds instead of Lansing.  That was Saturday evening this year, when Lansing Volunteer Fire Department members gathered at the Lakewatch Inn to celebrate another successful year, to swear in the officers for this year, and honor those who went above and beyond the call of duty, answering 950 emergency calls, undergoing countless hours of training, and keeping equipment in top shape to be ready for any emergency.

Guests at the Installation of Officers Banquet included representatives from the Department of Emergency Response, s New York State Fire Instructor, and the Cayuga Heights, Locke, McLean, Ithaca Airport, Freeville, and Dryden Fire Departments.  The department elects officers each year.  Outgoing Director of Emergency Response Lee Shurtleff swore in the officers Saturday.  It was a busy night, with several emergencies coming over muted radios at the banquet.  Shurtleff said he thought he might have to leave at one point, but the Emergency Response staff had everything under control.

"I think that's a good sign for the county when you have those kinds of responses among multiple departments to two reported structure fires at one time, and know that the country remains in good hands," he said. "It's due in great part to the mutual aid system we have, and to the leadership that our officers provide day in and day out, and to the dedication of the volunteers across the county."

This year's officers are Chief Scott Purcell,  Deputy Chief Brad George, Asst. Chief Todd Mix, Asst. Chief Joe Lisi, Captain Josh Nalley, Lieutenant Nelson Golden, and Lieutenant Gary Brooker.

Lansing responded to 950 emergencies in 2018, including 433 fire calls and 517 EMS calls.  Lansing received 28 mutual aid responses from nearby departments, including 25 from the Cayuga Heights Fire Department, which covered for Lansing during the banquet.  Lansing covers for Cayuga Heights when they hold their own banquet in April.  Lansing responded to 21 calls to help in nearby communities.  The top three responders for 2018 were Marcus Bailey with 292 Calls, Kyle Steiner with 284 calls, and Zach Steiner, who responded to 245 calls.

Rick DrakeDeputy Chief Brad George congratulates former Chief Rick Drake (right) on 40 years of service to the Lansing Volunteer Fire Department

Jim Jackson Sr. was recognized for 10 years of service to the department, Tom Sill for 25 years, and former Chief Rick Drake was honored for 40 years of service.

Training awards went to Zach Steiner with the most in-house training hours - 56 of which were at the Lansing department, and an overall total of 217 hours.  After completing 282 hours of training, 42 at Lansing, and 240 at other locations, Marcus Bailey was honored for completing the most overall training hours.

Zach Steiner was named Rookie Of The Year.

The Joe 'Ditty' Joseph Award for years of dedication.  Joseph was a long time firefighter in the Lansing Department.  The Lansing Fire Department raises money each year at its annual golf tournament that is named for him.  The proceeds fund a scholarship to a Lansing High School Graduate.  This year's recipient was Darrell Rhoads, who, in addition to being a fire department member is one of Lansing's five Fire Commissioners.

Lansing FIre Commissioners

The Chief's Award winner's name is inscribed on a plaque at Lansing Central Station.  It recognizes outstanding service.  This year's awardees were Marcus Bailey, Gary Brooker, Nelson Golden, Josh, Nalley, Mike Robinson, Kyle Steiner, and Zach Steiner.

Marcus Bailey was named Lansing's EMS Responder Of The Year.  EMS Dedication and Service awards for the year went to Josh Nalley and Kyle Steiner.

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