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New York City Fire Department
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Robert A. McCracken

Robert A. McCracken
Chief of the Emergency Medical Service Command

Throughout the course of history, men and women have been singled out and recognized for their outstanding contributions to society and the positive impact they have made on their fellow citizens. These dedicated few are praised as heroes and honored for their efforts. Career emergency medicine professionals know only too well the impact they can have on the lives of a person in need. This noble profession allows us to bring compassion and comfort to others at the most critical of times. It is these efforts and the unique abilities of pre-hospital care providers throughout this City that have allowed our Department to be recognized as the best EMS system in the country. As the ranking EMS Chief officer in the Department, I take great pride in the men and women of the EMS Command and members of the participating voluntary hospitals who, despite difficult conditions, fulfill the needs of the EMS system through delivery of prompt and professional pre-hospital medical care at more than 3000 assignments a day. Currently, even with the recent demand on our system from heat-related emergencies and record-high call volume, response time is at an all-time low and more resources are available to citizens and visitors of the City of New York than ever before. We all can stand proud of our accomplishments. Today, we come together to honor these EMS professionals who, through their own personal commitment to excellence, have been singled out for their contributions to society and the EMS system in which they work. As you read about their actions in this booklet, you will see these medal recipients exemplify the highest levels of skill and dedication to the EMS profession. Through personal sacrifice and, in some cases, grave danger to their own well-being, these members have stepped beyond the call of duty and have employed their skills to accomplish their mission under great adversity. I have the highest respect for the job they perform, day in and day out. I take this occasion to thank every member of the EMS Command as we congratulate this year’s medal recipients. It is their efforts that define the paramount concern of all EMS professionals--patient care above all else! I am honored to be a part of today’s ceremonies. As we look forward to the new millennium, please join me in re-affirming our personal commitment to excellence and patient care.

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