The Fairview Fire District honored one of their "Pillars" at a recent dinner. The award was presented to Peter Wawrzonek for his tireless commitment to the community, the fire district, and the brotherhood of firefighters that he holds in high regard.

Pete Wawrzonek, a/k/a "Pete The Alphabet" as he is called by his peers, wanted to be a firefighter ever since the age of 5. He joined the Fairview Fire department in 1973 and held many different positions until an on the job injury in 2005 that required several surgeries led to his retirement in 2010.

Chairman of the Board of Fire Commissioners for Fairview Andrew Calamari honored Wawrzonek by calling him "a man who has spent his life serving the public during their worst times and who continues to serve in his retirement by responding to natural disasters nationwide to assist with recovery efforts.

Fairview Fire Department Chief Chris Maeder said of Wawrzonek, "his willingness to continue serving those individuals who are in need after his retirement from the fire district is a reflection of the selfless man of character that he truly is."

The retired Lieutenant is not sitting on the couch. He has become a major part of Team Rubicon USA which is a disaster response organization that was founded in 2010 by some veterans of both the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars. It is a volunteer organization made up of military veterans, first responders, and civilians. Through Team Rubicon USA Pete has responded to countless natural disasters including the Sandy recovery.

"I can no longer be a first responder, but I can be a second responder and that is where I am volunteering now," Wawrzonek said.

For more information on Team Rubicon USA, visit


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