Horry County Fire Rescue graduates of the largest class of firefighters, EMTs in the history of the state

CONWAY, SC (WMBF) – Public safety is a key issue for Horry County leaders. However, to keep people safe, they need more first responders.

Horry County Fire Rescue graduated the largest class of new firefighters and EMTs in South Carolina history, with 58 joining the department on Friday night.

“I think everything I’ve done in my life has brought me to where I am right now,” said Julia Currier, the class’s record holder.

Currier has a passion for helping people – and this passion, along with her medical background, has led her to the HCFR.

One thing all that passion and experience could not prepare her for was the maze of the fire school.

“I don’t even know how to start,” Currier said. “You’re all armed, obscured by a face shield, you can’t see anything, you just have to feel it in search of your hands.”

Currier emerged from the maze as the largest firefighter and EMT class in state history.

Her record-breaking class will be busy, managing another record that is constantly being broken in Horry County: call volume.

This department recorded 74,000 calls in 2021, which is more than any other year before.

“Horry County firefighters are pumping really good rescuers,” said Tony Casey, a spokesman for the department. “It’s exciting for us.” We are now north of 500 first response units in operation for the Horry district, so as our region grows, so do we. ”

Currier had so many classmates because Horry County has so many new fire stations in Longs, Highway 90, Shell, Forestbrook, Aynor and Loris in the coming years.

The department undertook to create larger stations so that they could serve more people and act as a second home for the first interveners.

“I’m open anywhere,” said Matthew Rockenstyre, who also graduated on Friday. “I’m learning the ropes.” It’s about seeing new people, places, things. “

Currier is still waiting to find out where she will be located so that she can begin to make people feel safe.

“It’s pretty nerve-wracking,” she said. “They have an envelope they give us where to show up, so we’re still waiting patiently.”

The new recruits will find out where they are headed right after graduation, and it will be all over the region.

The fire rescue service in Horry County has another large class, although not a record one, which will be launched soon.

About 50 more firefighters are training and should join Currier and Rockenstyre soon.

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