MANITOULIN ISLAND – A Manitoulin Island paramedic with the Manitoulin-Sudbury District Services Board (DSB) has been awarded one of the most prestigious awards given in the service.
“It is quite an honour,” stated paramedic Aaron Wright, a resident of Gore Bay who was awarded was awarded the national Governor General’s Emergency Medical Services Exemplary Service Medal at the Ontario Paramedics 2019 awards dinner held in Windsor last week. “There were 115 of us presented with the award.”
The Emergency Medical Services Exemplary Service Medal, created on July 7, 1994, recognizes professionals in the provision of pre-hospital emergency medical services on or after October 31, 1991, and have completed 20 years of exemplary service, including at least 10 years in the performance of duties involving potential risk.
Robert Smith, chief of paramedic services with DSB told the Recorder, “the Governor General of Canada Emergency Medical Services Exemplary Service Medal is for those paramedics that that work in the service for 20 years, but at least 10 years have to be street level or present the potential for risk. But it also recognizes what is this person doing for the community outside of work; and in Aaron’s case he is a member of the Billings Township Volunteer Fire Department as a training officer and is a member of the Sudbury Shriners Club (he is also serving his second term on council for the town of Gore Bay).”
“It was quite an event,” said Mr. Wright. He explained he had started out as a volunteer paramedic in 1993 with the Gore Bay Volunteer Ambulance Service, with Marie Clarke as supervisor of the service at the time.
“I began my career as a professional paramedic in May 1995,” Mr. Wright told the Recorder. “Yes, I enjoy the work I do very much; it is rewarding to help people, which is the best award reward in itself.”
“Aaron is a great example of someone who gives back to their community,” said Mr. Smith, who pointed out that this is a national medal and only about 2,000 people have ever received the recognition. “When any of our paramedics reach 20 years’ service, we consider whether their service is exemplary and if so we submit a nomination to the Chancellory. Aaron is definitely deserving of this recognition, his service to the community is exemplary.”