Two Bald Hills Fire District Volunteers Honored by VFW


Two volunteers with Bald Hills Fire District No. 17 were honored by VFW Post 5580’s Commander Brandi Smith for their efforts with the department last year. 

Steven Slater, the district’s deputy fire chief, spoke highly of Mark Edwards and Lt. Ron Smith. 

“Neither of them is shy about getting involved and it is their will to serve that has helped make our department great,” Slater said. “The Bald Hills Fire District No. 17 is proud to have these two leaders counted among its volunteers.”

Slater added both men retired from their previous careers before joining the Bald Hills Fire District. He said since they’re “seasoned in life,” they brought maturity and wisdom from their prior experiences to the fire district.

According to Slater, Smith was recognized by VFW Post 5580 as their firefighter of the year. He’s been an active member for over 15 years and has served as an officer for most of his tenure, according to Slater.

“He has been a primary advisor for the firefighter cadet youth program leading them to a state championship in 2017,” Slater said. “He continues to lead department training and community outreach programs.”

Edwards was honored as the VFW Post 5580’s EMS provider of the year. Slater said Edwards has excelled since he became a volunteer with Bald Hills Fire District in 2018. 

“He has completed training up to the fire officer level and works part-time on a private ambulance in Thurston County,” Slater said. “He serves with the State Fire Marshal office as a fire service testing evaluator around the state.”