INDIAN ROCKS BEACH – Two firefighters of the Pinellas Suncoast Fire and Rescue District were given commendation medals on Oct. 16 by the Sons of the American Revolution. Lieutenant Matthew Carpenter, firefighter/EMT, and Robert Williams, firefighter/paramedic; were given these awards by Jim Phillips, 1st Vice President of the Clearwater Chapter of the Florida Society of the Sons of the American Revolution, at their annual Public Service Awards Banquet.
One of the goals of the Sons of the American Revolution is to inspire the community with the principles on which our nation was founded. In honoring Carpenter and Williams, the Sons have chosen to identify two individuals who have committed themselves to protecting persons, property, and environment.
Carpenter began his firefighting career in 1997 as a volunteer firefighter with Pinellas Suncoast Fire & Rescue District. After graduating from the Pinellas County Fire Academy, he became a full-time professional firefighter in 2001, transitioning to Pinellas Suncoast in 2006 as a firefighter and EMT.
Carpenter is certified as a fire officer I and holds certifications for Hazardous Materials Operations, Aerial Apparatus Operations, and is recognized by the state of Florida as a fire instructor 1 and live fire training instructor. Carpenter continues his professional development by attending the National Fire Academy operated by the Federal Emergency Management Agency in Emmitsburg, Md.
Williams began his career in emergency services by attending the St. Petersburg College Paramedic Program and the Hillsborough Community College Firefighter Academy. Williams came to Pinellas Suncoast in 2008 as a firemedic. He has served as a Pinellas County SWAT Medic and worked part-time in local emergency rooms to enhance his clinical skills.
Williams serves as a field preceptor for EMT and paramedic students at St. Petersburg College and teaches in the EMT and Paramedic programs at Hillsborough Community College. Williams was selected by the Local VFW as paramedic of the year in 2009 and as an “All Star” by HCA Hospitals in 2012. He is certified by the state of Florida as a gire officer 1. In his spare time, Williams flies worldwide assisting in the relocation of sick and injured patients.