The Fort Myer Officer's Club was a sea of uniforms last week as local emergency responders were brought together by the Arlington Chamber of Commerce. The 24th Annual Valor Awards recognized individuals from Arlington's Fire, Police and Sheriff's departments who have provided outstanding service to the community.
"The Chiefs would like everybody to get an award," says Rich Doud, president of the Chamber of Commerce. "And I don't blame them." A selection committee from the Chamber chooses the awardees after they are nominated by their departments.
Sheriff Beth Arthur and Fire Chief Jim Schwartz presented one Meritorious Service Award and two Lifesaving Awards to individuals from their departments. Police Chief Doug Scott presented one Meritorious Service Award, a Valor Award, and a Valor with Lifesaving Award to members of his department.
The Randolph Elementary School Chorus sang "You are Our Heroes" before the awards were presented. Chaplain Vincent Guss, director of Pastoral Care at Virginia Hospital Center, delivered an invocation, and Sgt. Maj. Abe Vega led the audience in reciting the Pledge of Allegiance. Doug McKelway from WJLA-TV (Channel 7) directed the presentation of awards, and reminisced on his childhood high-jinx at Fort Myer.