HometownBell County


Fort Hood Fire Department wins competition, named best on an Army installation

Posted at 5:38 PM, Feb 16, 2023
and last updated 2023-02-16 18:38:12-05

FORT HOOD, Texas — From countless emergency calls to the largest fire in Fort Hood’s history, the Fort Hood fire department had quite a year.

Those efforts have earned them the title of Best Large department on an Army installation.

”It’s an annual D.O.D awards program that all fire emergency services have the option to be a part of,” said Dep. Chief Joshua Gillis, Fort Hood Fire Department. “It gives each agency its own chance to reflect on their accomplishments that they’ve done throughout the year.”

The team of civilian and Army firefighters had plenty to reflect on.

”The firefighters had 3 saves where they performed CPR and the saved 3 people and they walked out of the hospital within a week or 2,” said Chief Andrew Lima, Fort Hood Fire Department. “So, that was one of our other major accomplishments.”

On top of being the best at the IMCOM, or Installation Management Command level, one of their Army firefighters was named Firefighter of the Year.

”I was a little surprised when I got it,” said CPL Ryan Hawkins, IMCOM Firefighter of The Year. “I got a phone call saying that they wanted to nominate me and that alone was humbling to me. To me, it’s just our day-to-day job.”

”It’s really nice for the department to get that recognition and the workers within the fire department itself but me personally, I never go out seeking recognition or anything like that,” said Arco Ruiz, Fort Hood Firefighter.

They earned it by being better than eight other large departments across the Army and plan to prove they can beat departments in other branches of the military next.

”The ultimate goal would be to compete with the other sister services such as the Air Force, Marines, the Navy, such like that,” said Dep. Chief Gillis.

If they keep doing things like responding to over 4,000 emergency calls in a year, they just might win.