GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – Local officials recognized the work of the brave men and women who continuously serve Pitt County.

The Greenville – Pitt County Chamber of Commerce, with the help of other city businesses, hosted the First Responders Appreciation Dinner at the Greenville Convention Center for the first time since 2017. Over 190 emergency responders were recognized for their work every day.

Trent McGee is the President and CEO of the Grenville – Pitt Chamber of Commerce. He thanked the emergency responders at the event as well as those who couldn’t attend the event.

“For the sacrifice you make each and every day, for the sacrifices your family makes each and every day, for you being out there on the frontlines protecting us and doing all that you can and staying dedicated and committed to our community and keeping our communities safe,” said McGee. “We can’t thank you enough.”

McGee and other members of the Chamber of Commerce were in an automobile accident just over a year ago, making their appreciation for ECU Health, Greenville-Fire Rescue, Greenville Police Department and the Pitt County Sheriff’s Office go deeper.

“Those people that came out, I could still see those people in my head, you know, who ran over to us. And the love they gave to us the patience they had with us, how calm they were with us. It was, it was amazing,” said McGee.

The event specifically recognized those who go above and beyond.

  • Outstanding Law Enforcement Officer of the Year – Ayyat Zeidan | Greenville Police Department
  • Outstanding Fire/Rescue Employee of the Year – Jeremy Cleaton | Greenville-Fire Rescue
  • Outstanding EMT of the Year – Michael Jones | Pitt County EMS
  • Outstanding Telecommunicator of the Year – Sidney Wainwright | Pitt County Sherrif’s Office
  • Hometown Hero Award – Chief Ted Sauls, Jr. | Greenville Police Department

“You may never know when you will need one of these people in this room to help seek relief. We do know what that’s like. So, you know, we’re thankful for that,” said McGee.

McGee said they want the appreciation event for first responders to grow each year and are hoping to get back to doing this annually, as it’s only a small token of what first responders deserve.