April 19, 2013 — Ron Downs, a paramedic dispatcher with LifeCare Ambulance Service recently received a Star of Life award from the American Ambulance Association. Downs has worked with LifeCare for the past 15 years, and was recognized for his proficiency as a dispatcher and his dependability. He started at LifeCare on the wheelchair van, becoming an EMT and a paramedic.
Along his career path, he became a dispatcher and took his knowledge as a medic and put it to work in our communications center.
According to LifeCare’s CEO, Ron Slagell, “Every day he demonstrates his ability to handle emergency calls efficiently which benefits each patient and our entire community. He is a quick learner and thinks of the big picture in all the decisions that he has to make each day as a dispatcher.”
In Washington, D.C., Downs joined 72 other Stars of Life recipients representing 30 different states, and was one of four Stars from Michigan. The recipients of the “Star of Life” distinction are medics, dispatchers, or other exceptional EMS personnel that have been nominated and are being recognized for service above and beyond the call of duty, years of service, on-duty heroism, or are honored as employees of the year. The event featured a banquet and presentation ceremony to honor the Stars. Downs also had the opportunity to visit Capitol Hill and meet with members and staff of the Michigan’s Congressional delegation, and delivered important information regarding the vital role that EMS plays in the healthcare delivery system.
The American Ambulance Association (AAA) presented Downs with the Star of Life Award during his visit to D.C. The AAA represents organizations serving more than 75% of the U.S. population with emergency and non-emergency care and medical transportation services. Jimmy Johnson, President of AAA, state, “As a community, we understand that we are stronger when we take a moment to remember who we are and what we have done. That is why our organization strives to spotlight the best of the best in the emergency medical services field during the Stars of Life event.” Past Stars of Life have included heroic individuals involved with the response to September 11, Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. “However,” Johnson notes, “all of our Stars have performed a duty equally important to the communities they serve on a daily basis.”
LifeCare Ambulance is a non-profit community service providing emergency and non-emergency ambulance services and medical transportation throughout seven counties in south-central Michigan.