PSC Police Chief Among Those Recognized at Mineral County Awards Dinner

 Mineral County honors

Those honored Friday evening during the Mineral County Business and Community Awards, and some of the people there to honor them, included: (front, l-r) Kirk Kesner, Fox's Pizza Den of Keyser; Mark and Joyce Reed, Reed's Drug Store; Jason Lambka and Lauren Trenter, Short Gap VFD; Zoey Harris, business student; (second row) Oral and Jeanne Markle, Tomar Trucking;  David Rucker, Mineral County 911 director; Eddie Amtower, New Creek VFD;  Amy and Frank Custer, Tri-State Memorial;  Patsy Koontz, special recognition; Harold "Dave" Malone, Wiley Ford VFD;  Brian Kerling, PSC Police chief; (back row) Krista Dixon, Mineral County Circuit Court clerk; Del. Allen Evans; Mara Boggs, representing Sen. Joe Manchin's office; Dr. Richard Lechliter, Mineral County Commission president; Roger Leatherman, Mineral County Commission; Del. Ruth Rowan; Sen. Charles Trump; Sen. Bob Williams; Reno Calemine, Calemine's Patriotic Shoe Shop; Dr. Leonard Colelli, Potomac State College president; Bill Hentosh, Mineral County OEM director; Kevin Clark, Mineral County Development Authority director; Anne Palmer, Mineral County Chamber of Commerce director; and Jerry Whisner, Mineral County Commission.

By Liz Beavers-Managing Editor.  Courtesy of the Mineral Daily News-Tribune 

KEYSER – Longtime New Creek firefighter Eddie Amtower was honored Friday with the Harry Alt Volunteer of the Year Award during the Mineral County Business and Community Awards dinner.

The award, named in memory of educator, firefighter and community volunteer Harry Alt, honors a Mineral County resident who goes above and beyond to serve his or her community through volunteer service.

Amtower has been a member of the New Creek Volunteer Fire Department for 36 years, having joined March 29, 1979. During his service, he has held many administrative and operational offices, including fire chief. He is currently the president of the company – the highest administrative office.

A second generational firefighter, Amtower joined the company after many of his brothers and his father had been a part of New Creek VFD.

Today, his son Dustin serves as chief, and he nominated his father for the award.

According to the nomination, Eddie “has been a mentor to countless young men and women over his tenure. To this day, he is still very active in the department by helping with all day-to-day operations and is still one of our top 10 responders to emergency incidents.”

Interestingly, Amtower knew the man after whom his award is named, and he and Alt often attended monthly county fire association meetings and state fire conventions together.

Amtower was presented his award by Bill Hentosh, director of the Mineral County Office of Emergency Management.

Hentosh also recognized Harold “Dave” Malone for his years of service to the Wiley Ford Volunteer Fire Department, and presented valor awards to Lauren Trenter and Justin Lambka, two EMTs with the Short Gap Volunteer Fire Department who helped save the life of a young boy who had become impaled in the head with a pair of scissors, and Mineral County 911 director David Rucker, whose quick response to a fire in New Creek Heights help keep the blaze from spreading to other structures.

Businesses honored by the Mineral County Chamber of Commerce and Development Authority were: Tomar Inc., Industry of the Year; Reed’s Drug Store, Business of the  Year; Fox’s Pizza Den, New Business of the Year; Zoey Harris, Outstanding Business Student; and Calemine’s Patriotic Shoe Shop of Keyser and Tri-State Memorial of Piedmont, Lifetime Community Businesses of the Year.

In addition, special recognition was given to Patsy Koontz for her community service given many years as the marketing and public relations director for Westvaco/NewPage/Verso, Margaret Miltenberger for her leadership in the bathhouse project for Camp Minco, and Potomac State College Police chief Brian Kerling for his leadership in training the community and school system in the recent active shooter exercise.

Guest speaker for the evening was Congressman David McKinley, who congratulated the award recipients for “fulfilling your part of the American dream.”

Looking out into the packed hall at the Davis Conference Center, he said, “I’m honored to see the people who are trying to make America great again.”

McKinley was introduced to the crowd by Mineral County Development Authority president and Keyser City Council member Terry Liller.

Mara Boggs Campbell, Keyser native who is the state representative for Sen. Joe Manchin’s office, also spoke briefly, congratulating the honorees and calling Mineral County “a gem.”

Brandon Combs, president of the Mineral County Chamber, served as emcee for the program and commented that “one of Mineral County’s greatest assets is its people,” and that the people are just one reason “why Mineral County is such a wonderful place to live and work.”

Dr. Leonard Colelli, president of Potomac State College of WVU, welcomed the crowd to the dinner, and Roger Leatherman, Mineral County Commission member and local pastor, gave the invocation and benediction.