On Thursday, October 25, The Valdosta Exchange Club named Ken Taylor as the 2018 Firefighter of the Year.
Ken Taylor began his employment with the City of Valdosta Fire Department in November of 2011 and presently holds the position of Sergeant. Sgt. Taylor is responsible for operating the fire apparatuses and conducting daily, weekly, and monthly, inspections to ensure the apparatuses are at the level of readiness. In addition, Sgt. Taylor assumes the Company Officer role in the absence of the Lieutenant.
In March of this year, Sgt. Taylor and his wife were returning home from Orlando, Florida when a motor vehicle crash occurred in front of them and without hesitation, Sgt. Taylor reacted to the scene. Utilizing his experience of firefighting and emergency medical training, he quickly assessed the scene that resulted in a vehicle being overturned with entrapment and began to render aid. Sgt. Taylor entered the overturned vehicle and found the driver pinned and a three-year-old in a car seat. Realizing that he could not help the driver, he immediately checked the child for injuries and removed him from the vehicle. After handing the child to the other bystanders, Sgt. Taylor returned to the driver and remained with her until the local first responders arrived and assumed patient care.
“This was a big surprise to me, I’m just a humble man who still has a passion to serve my community. Service is what I got into the business for and I still love it today. We do a lot of training, we train to train some more and train some more. It gets us ready for whatever we come up against, no matter if it’s in Valdosta or that morning in Orlando,” said Sgt. Taylor.
Taylor was also named the City of Valdosta employee of the month in July.
“Sgt. Taylor exemplifies duty, service, courage, and obligation to his craft and his fellow man. During his career with the City, Sgt. Taylor has mentored and counted countless firefighters in both their personal and professional lives,” said Chief Broome.
The City of Valdosta applauds Lt. Ply for his dedication and compassion to the Valdosta Fire Department and the firefighting career field, and for being recognized by the Exchange Club as the 2018 Firefighter of the Year for Valdosta.