Staff Photo: Keith Farner Gavin Robertson, 3, pins a badge on the uniform of his father, Scott Robertson, as his mother, Lindsey, left, looks on at the Gwinnett County Fire Department Promotion Ceremony on Wednesday at the Gwinnett Justice and Administration Center. Robertson is also a driver engineer.
LAWRENCEVILLE -- Since they were in recruit school 14 years ago, Angie and David Jugenheimer have progressed through the ranks of the Gwinnett County Fire Department in near lockstep.
So it was fitting on Wednesday night that the husband and wife were together again for another badge ceremony when they were promoted to new captain positions, as their children Austin, 5, and Lily 2, looked on. The Jugenheimers were among 39 members of the department to be promoted during a ceremoney that included driver engineers, lieutenants, captains, battalion chiefs, a district commander and Fire Chief Casey Snyder.
"It's a great honor; as you move up in rank, there is less and less opportunity, and to be promoted together is something we never thought would happen," David Jugenheimer said. "It's overwhelming, I guess, to see that we progressed through the department at the same time."
The event was a family affair in many ways as the firefighters and their spouses, children and other relatives took part in pinning badges and posing for pictures at the Gwinnett Justice and Administration Center.
"Our fire family gets to celebrate this as well," David Jugenheimer said.
Snyder recently took over for Bill Myers, who retired last month, and thanked the family members in attendance for their support of the firefighters.
County administrator Glenn Stephens said he appreciated firefighters because of his late grandfather, who retired from the Atlanta Fire Department, and after his house was struck by lightning.
"You guys are results-oriented," Stephens told the honorees. "You get there, and you take care of a medical emergency, a fire emergency, and you do it with professionalism, with calm, with peace, and you transfer that to the citizens of this county, or the visitors who may be passing through. That is not unnoticed, and very much appreciated."
Stephens, who admitted that he learned there is no such thing as a small fire, said the men and women who wear the public safety uniforms are the greatest force for good that the world ever knows.
"Your professionalism with one another, and helping each other out, and recognizing the severity of the call," Stephens said. "I just want to thank y'all for that. We see examples of that. It doesn't have to be heroic actions, but it's the acts of kindness and service that you all do for our citizens and visitors every day that make the difference."