DLA Installation Operations Richmond firefighters promoted

By DLA Aviation Public Affairs

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Defense Logistics Agency Installation Operations Richmond’s Fire and Emergency Services Chief Don Rodgers promoted two firefighters in a pinning ceremony on Nov. 14 at the fire station on Defense Supply Center Richmond, Virginia. The ceremony was a first for the department.

Chris Bales was promoted from firefighter/paramedic to captain. Bales came to center as a firefighter in 2009 and achieved the rank of firefighter/paramedic in 2011.

Rick Ferrell was promoted to assistant chief, Technical Services. Ferrell began as a firefighter in 2006 and was promoted to captain in 2015.

“Both Chris and Rick are very deserving of these promotions,” said Don Rodgers, chief, Fire and Emergency Services, DLA Installation Operations Richmond. “They have worked hard throughout their careers and I look forward to their new ideas as they help shape the future of the department.”

Bales and Ferrell were pinned with their new ranks by their families during the ceremony.

Rogers issued a challenge to the newly promoted servicemen. “I challenge you to earn the leadership role, respect those you work with, encourage involvement and look at every process, opportunity and change in the department through the eyes of your personnel so you see the impact that you have,” he said.

The pinning ceremony is a long-standing tradition within the emergency services community. The ceremony’s origin is traced back to medieval times and is linked to a knight’s shield.  The Maltese cross that is widely used throughout the fire service was often a predominant symbol on the shield representing protection and honor.   The shield was a representation of the knight’s creed or belief that their purpose in life was to serve those less fortunate. They held that service, honor and integrity define the service to others that they perform and provide.