Monte crew picks firefighter of the year

“It is the greatest honor I could ever imagine,” the Elma native said in an email.

Volunteer firefighter and EMT Zale Carter has been selected as the Montesano firefighter of the year.

His peers at the Montesano Fire Department voted to present him with the honor. There are six paid staff members and 37 volunteers with the MFD.

“It is the greatest honor I could ever imagine,” the Elma native said in an email.

Carter has been with the department since December 2017.

“He just did a remarkable job,” Chief Cory Rux said. “He was very consistent with responding. He took a lot of initiative and was really involved, not only around the station, but also in the cadet class that we’re doing with the high school.”

During 2018, Carter completed his National Registry of Emergency Medical Technicians training, responded to more than 600 9-1-1 calls and became certified to teach First Aid/CPR through the American Heart Association. He also is the president of the Board of Volunteer Firefighters of Montesano.

“Zale has all the attributes that exemplify the high character traits of a volunteer firefighter. His dedication, compassion and desire to learn are continually on display,” Rux said in a Facebook post.

“I feel fortunate to have been given the opportunity to serve this community and participate in a quality organization,” Carter said in an email. “Not only have I learned life-saving skills, but I have been mentored by amazing community leaders and have become part of the family” that is the Montesano Fire Department.