Culture, Feature Story

Highlights from the 7th Annual Above & Beyond Awards Ceremony

Congratulations to the award recipients who were honored at the 2019 Detroit Public Safety Foundation’s Above & Beyond Awards Ceremony! On November 6th, Travis and I attended the special event, which was held at the MGM Grand in Downtown Detroit. Detroit Police Officers, Firefighters, and EMS personnel were recognized for going “Above & Beyond” the call of duty. 

Detroit Police Department
Detroit Police Officers, Firefighters, and EMS personnel were recognized for going “Above & Beyond” the call of duty. 

DETROIT POLICE, FIREFIGHTERS, AND EMT RECOGNIZED AT ABOVE & BEYOND

Sixty honorees were recognized at Above & Beyond Awards Ceremony. Police Chief James E. Craig and Fire Commissioner Eric Jones presented awards to the honorees. Comedian Alonzo Bodden hosted the event and he kept the crowd laughing. (FUN FACT: Alonzo also won the 3rd season of Last Comic Standing.) 

Detroit Police Department
Police Chief James E. Craig (pictured) and Fire Commissioner Eric Jones presented awards to the honorees. Comedian Alonzo Bodden (pictured) hosted the event.

“You are brave men and women who enrich our lives every day and make our state a stronger place to live, work, and play.” 

~ Governor Gretchen Whitmer

DETROIT FIRE DEPARTMENT: MEDAL OF VALOR RECIPIENTS

  • Firefighter Carl Billings III 
  • Sergeant Darryle Braxton 
  • Trial Firefighter Dustin Burns 
  • Firefighter Tyrone Callaway 
  • Firefighter Richard Castle 
  • Lieutenant James Curry 
  • Chief James Davis 
  • Captain Christopher Dixon 
  • Sergeant Francis Dombrowski
  • Firefighter Darrell Freeman II 
  • Firefighter Leo Keyes 
  • Emergency Medical Technician Justin Kidd
  • Firefighter Desmond Orr 
  • Senior Firefighter Joseph Palm 
  • Senior Firefighter Jason Raleigh 
  • Senior Firefighter Jason Reedy 
  • Retired Sergeant Daniel Salkowski 
  • Captain Jeffery Schneider 
  • Emergency Medical Technician Madison Stitt
  • Firefighter Driver Renny Shelby 
  • Retired Fire Inspector David Tucker 
  • Lieutenant Jeffrey Urbas
  • Firefighter Brian Varnas 
  • Firefighter Nashanique Webster 

DETROIT FIRE DEPARTMENT: PURPLE HEART 

  • Emergency Medical Technician Jordan Wiseman 
Detroit Fire Department
Detroit Fire Department

DETROIT FIRE DEPARTMENT: EMERGENCY MEDICAL MERIT AWARD

  • Emergency Medical Technician Gregory Hider 
  • Emergency Medical Technician Thomas Lane
Detroit First Responders

DETROIT POLICE DEPARTMENT: MEDAL OF VALOR

  • Police Officer Steven Anouti 
  • Police Officer Joseph Anthony
  • Police Officer Lidya Ayar 
  • Police Officer Vitaliy Borshch 
  • Police Officer Christopher Bush
  • Police Officer Ronald Cadez 
  • Police Officer Raymond Chandler
  • Police Officer Donyale Crutchfield
  • Police Officer Jasmyn Delano-Ownsby 
  • Police Officer Evelyn Dority 
  • Police Officer Hayley Genaw 
  • Police Officer Lester Johnson 
  • Police Officer Brandon Jordan 
  • Police Officer Eric McCombs 
  • Police Officer Dana McGregor 
  • Police Officer Adlone Morris 
  • Police Officer Anthony Murray
  • Police Officer Jordan Napier 
  • Police Officer Michael Reyes-Morales
  • Sergeant Douglas Richter 
  • Police Officer Mario Rodriguez 
  • Police Officer Mazen Sayegh 
  • Corporal Brandon Seed 
  • Police Officer Ryan Shrum 
  • Sergeant Abery Thomas 
  • Police Officer Janelle Thomas 
  • Police Officer Nicholas Wagner
  • Police Officer Antonio Williams
  • Police Officer Jonathan Williams
  • Police Officer Whitney Willis 
  • Police Officer Daron Zhou 
Detroit Police Department

DETROIT POLICE DEPARTMENT: PURPLE HEART

  • Police Officer Christopher Bush 
  • Retired Police Officer Scott Larkins *posthumous award 
  • Police Officer Michael Reyes Morales 
  • Police Officer Mario Rodriguez
Detroit Police Department
Police Chief James E. Craig shakes hands with the late Police Officer Scott Larkins’ family.
Detroit Police Department
On behalf of their father, Police Officer Scott Larkins’ children accepted his Purple Heart Award. Mr. Larkins was awarded the Purple Heart posthumously.

“It’s because of you that the City of Detroit is on a sustainable path to recovery.”

~ Detroit Mayor Mike Duggan

TWO DETROIT COMMUNITY PARTNERS RECOGNIZED

Community partners Devon Kennard (Detroit Lions’ Linebacker) and Gary Torgow (TCF Financial Corporation’s Executive Chairman), were also recognized for their contribution to the City of Detroit. Mr. Torgow received the City Change Maker award for his support of the Detroit Police Department and for his support of the police department’s Peer Support Team.

Above and Beyond 2019
Mr. Torgow received the City Change Maker award for his support of the Detroit Police Department and for his support of the police department’s Peer Support Team.

The Detroit Lions were awarded the Public Safety Partner Award for their philanthropic work in Detroit. Lions’ Linebacker Devon Kennard accepted the award on behalf of the football team.

In 2019, the Detroit Lions donated a $100,000 grant to the Detroit Public Safety Foundation (DPSF) for the Brotherhood and Sisterhood Programs. According to DPSF, the grant is part of the “Detroit Lions Inspire Change” social justice initiative. The “Detroit Lions Inspire Change” also helped fund scholarship grants for six students involved in the Brotherhood and Sisterhood Programs.

Devon Kennard Detroit Lions
The Detroit Lions were awarded the Public Safety Partner Award for their philanthropic work in Detroit.

Devon Kennard on the “Detroit Lions Inspire Change” social justice initiative:

“In the NFL, there was a lot of talk about bringing awareness to social injustice. We wanted to find a way to actually act on it and do something and spend our time and our money and our resources. This is what we came up with and I think it’s just the beginning.” 

Patti Kukula, Executive Director of the Detroit Public Safety Foundation on the 7th Annual Above & Beyond Awards Ceremony:

“Above & Beyond allows us to honor Detroit’s first-responders and highlight their exceptional service to the City of Detroit. “It is a joy for us to recognize their service and show them that the community supports them. This night matters for the first-responders and we are proud to host it each year.”

Detroit Police Department
Congratulations to Detroit’s First Responders!

Special thanks to the DPSF for inviting Good Life Detroit to the Above & Beyond Awards Ceremony! 


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All photographs are courtesy of Good Life Detroit.

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