Firefighter Eric Newell was recently awarded the Medal of Gallantry by Schererville Fire Chief Joe Kruzan for his efforts during a fire at the Griffith Mansards apartment complex earlier this year.
The medal is awarded to firefighters who show great initiative and have been instrumental in rescuing another person from possible death.
“While inside of the building extinguishing the fire, conditions became too dangerous to continue interior firefighting efforts. Upon deciding to exit the structure, a firefighter collapsed and was unable to exit,” Newell said.
“At this time, I initiated a mayday and was able to remove the firefighter from the structure unharmed.”
Newell has worked with the Schererville Fire Department for four years, and serves as the Political Action Committee chairman and president of Professional Firefighters Local 4279.
“A lot of responsibility comes with being a firefighter. The job is very stressful, but it’s the greatest job in the world,” Newell said.
“I never know what I’m going to face. Every shift and every call is different.”
Newell is a 2001 graduate of Lake Central High School, and attended Weber State University. After completing multiple fire-related training classes, he finished EMT-Basic training and recently completed paramedic schooling.
Newell resides in Schererville and enjoys playing softball, hockey and spending time with his 4-year-old son, Teigan.
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