The city of McCleary recognized its First Responders of the Year last week.
Paul Nott received the Fireman of the Year award and one to both K-9 Officer Mike Gettle and K-9 Vader received Officer of the Year awards.
“This was a great recognition for the first responders because it came directly from the people that live in our community. McCleary Clerk-Treasurer Wendy Collins wrote in an email. “It shows the support and appreciation the town of McCleary has for its firemen and police officers. They were given plaques and the community celebrated with cake and lots of pictures and congratulations.”
Gettle shared his appreciation for the award in a letter written to Our Community Credit Union staff, “who has been a huge sponsor of our K-9 program,” Collins said.
The letter was written under the heading “From the desk of K-9 Vader.” It read as follows:
“To my Handler, Officer Gettle, and my surprise, we were awarded Officer of the Year 2019 at the monthly City of McCleary Council meeting. This was voted on by the citizens of McCleary. We appreciate the award and citizens support.
“Officer Gettle and I have been hard at work training and helping the surrounding agencies with finding narcotic drugs. We recently have assisted DTF (Drug Task Force), WSP (Washington State Patrol), Grays Harbor County Sheriff’s Office, and Elma PD.
“This last month we were asked by Homeland Security (U.S. Customs) to help search a commercial ship transporting vehicles coming from Mexico. This was my first time on a big Ship. Although we did not find any drugs, I learned a lot.
“My favorite Deputy Clerk, Lindsay, gave me a birthday party on October 6th. I am 6 years old now.
“Thank You to the citizens of McCleary and Our Community Credit Union for all of your support!
“K-9 Vader and Narcotics K-9 Officer M. Gettle”