The State of Alaska has named Bayside Fire Department volunteer firefighter Jim Pickett as Alaska’s Firefighter of the Year.
Pickett worked with the state to get a grant to bring nearly 900 smoke detectors to Kodiak and then spent the summer installing them with some help from his wife Kiela and a few firefighter buddies.
Bayside Fire Chief Bob Himes:
— (Firefighter 1 :5 sec "He took phone calls at home, signed people up and went out on his own time and installed them."
Pickett was honored at last week’s Kodiak Island Borough Assembly meeting for not only his work installing smoke detectors, but also for educating kids about fire safety and conducting child safety seat and bike helmet inspections. He’s been with the department for nearly 20 years and says he was surprised by many of the houses he visited.
— (Firefighter 2 :14 sec " Pretty amazing… workable smoke detectors."
Pickett says he hopes to bring more smoke detectors to Kodiak when the money becomes available. Though the program is over, for now, Pickett remains committed to the goal of providing smoke detectors to anybody who needs one.
— (Firefighter 3 :6 sec "If somebody calls me and says ‘Hey, I need a smoke alarm,’ I’ll get them one. I track one down and get it for them."
Meanwhile, he’s planning to teach fire prevention to seniors and is looking for money to get the department a fire prevention trailer and a Sparky the Firedog costume.