|FORT LEWIS, Wash., June 28, 2006 — Sgt. Scott P. Hankins joined the Army to make a better life for himself and to realize his dream of being an Army firefighter.
This month Hankins was named 2005 Army Firefighter of Year.
“I was totally shocked,” said Hankins, 63rd Ordnance Company, 80th Ordnance Battalion. “It’s quite an honor to earn an award in any (profession) at this level.”
Fort Lewis Fire Chief Dean Dixon wasn’t surprised.
“Hankins doesn’t sit idle too much; he’s always keeping busy,” Dixon said. “He is always seeking ways to better educate himself.”
As a noncommissioned officer in charge of nine military firefighters, Hankins realizes the importance of paying attention to detail, asking questions and seeking new knowledge, especially when it comes to the welfare of his soldiers. While he doesn’t consider being 30 a disadvantage, he does feel the need to work harder than younger firefighters.
“Because I’m older, I want to study more and try to get as many certifications as I can,” Hankins said. “I also want to make it easier for the younger soldiers to get all their certifications and as much knowledge as they can get so they can be better at their job.”
Hankins said getting personally involved at the scene of accidents gives him a sense of pride and accomplishment.