Twenty-five Calgarians were recognized Wednesday for jumping into action when they were needed most.

The recipients of this year’s bravery awards were nominated by fellow Calgarians and the Calgary Fire Department for courageous actions during incidents that played out over the last two years.


They were commended as part of Beyond the Call, an annual ceremony that celebrates Calgarians and emergency service personnel who went out of their way to help during incidents involving the fire department.

“It’s just so wonderful to see people step up out of their comfort zone,” said CFD public information officer Carol Henke. “These are people that don’t necessarily have the type of training and background that firefighters do, they don’t have the tools at their disposal. And they intervened in a way that made a huge difference in peoples lives.”

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For Calgary Transit operator Vincent Fleck, the incident that led to his nomination started out as just another day on the job.

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In May 2018, Fleck was driving his last run on Route 145 through the community of Redstone when he smelled smoke.

“On the way out it was still in my head,” Fleck said Wednesday.

Considering it was his last run of the evening, Fleck jumped into action and went to investigate, finding a home ablaze.

“I looked around and saw the fire and ran down, called 911 and pushed the doorbell,” he said.

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The house was owned by Agata Bastarache, who lived there with her husband, two children and grandparents, plus, a pet dog and rabbit. All of them were able to get out of the home safely.

Fleck then brought the family onto his bus to keep warm while they waited for firefighters to arrive and put out the small fire. The cause of the fire was determined to be improper disposal of smoking materials.

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Fleck stayed on scene for five hours in the middle of the night to help the family.

Nearly a year later, when asked about being recognized for his efforts, he remained humble about the experience.

“I did what anyone would’ve done,” Fleck said. “Anybody in that situation, they would’ve called 911, they would’ve ran down and rang the doorbell. I just happened to be the guy that did it.”

Although this year’s awards are over, anyone can nominate a hero who acted in an exceptional way during an incident involving the CFD by calling 311.

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

Calgarians honoured with bravery awards for courageous actions



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