CORAL SPRINGS, FLA. (WSVN) - Coral Springs Police and Fire Department members were awarded for how prepared they were and how they responded to the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in 2018.
The Coral Springs City Commission celebrated the first responders on Wednesday for their hard work and bravery.
“I would trade every award and accolade for this to have never happened,” said Coral Springs Police Chief Clyde Parry. “They were ordinary people that did extraordinary things that day.”
In April, they were also presented the Dave Sanders Rescue Task Force Award for their actions.
The award is named in honor of Coach Dave Sanders, who lost his life while protecting his students during the Columbine high school shooting in 1999.
“A lot of times, police and fire sit back and say, ‘Did I do everything I could have done?'” said Coral Springs Fire Chief Frank Babinec.
Receiving the award answers that question for some of the first responders.
The aftermath of the shooting has remained a struggle to deal with for many involved but especially for one of Chief Babinec’s firefighters.
“It almost gave him a little bit of peace of mind that he helped save lives by preparing,” said Babinec.
Although they are not seeking any recognition or awards for their actions, it’s an honor the police chief believes the departments, school and community deserve.
“You never know when something horrible is going to happen, so preparing for that day is so huge, and that’s really what this award is about,” said Parry.
Parry and Babinec said receiving the award came as a surprise to them.
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