Fire Department honors service, bravery

At its annual awards ceremony as part of National Fire Prevention Week, the Fire Department honored these City employees with major awards for their service and bravery.

Public Safety Medal
Matthew Bauer

Matthew Bauer was working on a private parking lot paving crew in November when he heard screaming and saw two women running from an apartment building. When he was told that someone was still inside, Matthew acted quickly, grabbing several fire extinguishers from the paving trucks. He entered the building several times with no other protection than a fire extinguisher, called out for any people still in the apartment, and extinguished a stove fire that had spread to the cabinets above. When Minneapolis Fire crews arrived at the scene they found that Matthew had extinguished the fire, preventing further damage and possible injury to residents of adjacent apartments.

Firefighters credit Matthew’s quick thinking, actions and composure with preventing injuries and further damage to the property and those nearby. His selfless actions under hazardous conditions put his safety at risk and went above and beyond expectations for the general public.

(Editor's note: An earlier version of this article incorrectly listed Matthew Bauer as a City employee.)

Meritorious Service Award
Brian Arradondo

In April, the Minneapolis Fire Department responded to a fire alarm at City Hall. Crews found a fire in the subbasement of the building. 911 dispatcher Brian Arradondo, a retired Minneapolis fire captain, provided essential assistance to firefighters during this logistically challenging fire.   

Brian’s experience and ability to assess the needs and hazards of the incident allowed him to calmly evacuate the Minneapolis Emergency Communications Center and then remain behind to help fire crews locate the fire and ventilate the area. Brian remained in the Fire Dispatch Center to maintain operations and provide a calming presence throughout the incident.

Brian’s actions prevented loss of property and possible harm to his coworkers. He took action for the welfare of others, and his selfless actions went above and beyond expectations.

Letter of Commendation
Battalion Chief Kathleen Mullen

In February 2014, crews responding to a fire at 2818 Colfax Ave. N. were given reports of multiple victims, some children, trapped in marginal, rapidly deteriorating conditions. Battalion Chief Kathleen Mullen’s tactical resolve and calm command presence were remarkable. Although every radio transmission seemed to contain more bad news, she adapted to each report calmly, responded effectively and maintained a clear presence of command for everyone on the scene. She displayed professionalism and leadership during extremely challenging conditions.

Community Service Award
Battalion Chief Laura Pilon
Staff Capt. Amber Lage
Capt. Bridget Nelson
Capt. DaRoss Jones
Capt. Paul Baumtrog
Capt. Thomas Clark
Fire Motor Operator Joshua Tunks
Fire Motor Operator Mary Mohn
Fire Motor Operator Tracy Terbell
Fire Motor Operator Benjamin Pena
Fire Motor Operator Laura Pawlacyk
Firefighter Carla McClellan
Firefighter Isabel Moreno

In March 2014, the Fire Department partnered with Park Nicollet Methodist Hospital and four other community fire departments to create a firefighter visit program for patients recently discharged from the hospital. This structured, one-time visit is a face-to-face meeting to ensure that the patient has safely transitioned to home and understands the next steps in his or her care. The visit includes a medication review; a home safety assessment; and a discussion of follow-up visits, signs and symptoms, and who to call with questions. The firefighters refer patients to resources as needed.

The dedication and compassion of the volunteer participants has directly contributed to the program’s resounding success. Their conspicuous acts of selflessness reflect highly on them, the Minneapolis Fire Department and the fire service.

Published Oct 20, 2015

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