New Bern Fire-Rescue division chief named fire officer of year

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NEW BERN, N.C. (WNCT) – New Bern Fire-Rescue Division Chief Jim McConnell received the Fire Officer of the Year award from the Eastern Carolina Firefighters’ Association Thursday night.

McConnell was not told and no idea he had been nominated for the award. His reaction:

“Complete surprise. I was shocked, really. It means a lot,” said McConnell.

When New Bern Fire Chief Bobby Boyd found out McConnell won, he told McConnell and his wife they were needed for a special night.

“I didn’t tell him where we were going, only that I needed his company on that night,” said Boyd.

The ECFA includes 37 counties in eastern North Carolina, and the ECFA’s Scholarship Committee reviews nominations to determine the honoree. The award is always given at the group’s January meeting.

“I am totally humbled to receive this award,” said McConnell. “This accomplishment was not possible on my own. Many thanks go to my parents for giving me a solid foundation, my wife and children for the support they give me 24/7, and to Chief Boyd and the Command Staff of New Bern Fire-Rescue for developing me into the fire officer that I am today.”

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