KEMSA Chronicle - Service chronicles

The service chronicles listed below were published in the Fall 2018 issue of the KEMSA Chronicle magazine. If you would like to submit news from your service for publication in the magazine and on this website, view information about submitting your news here.


Clark County EMS

Clark County EMS participated in their local July 4th parade this summer. They wanted to share a neat photo from that event.

Ellis County EMS

Ellis County EMS is proud to announce the promotions of Shift Lieutenant Austin Thalheim to Shift Supervisor and Paramedic Dania Schroeder to Shift lieutenant. Supervisor Thalheim began his career with Ellis County EMS in January 2003. Lieutenant Schroeder returned to Ellis County EMS as a paramedic in September 2005. The Administration and staff of Ellis County EMS congratulate both and wish them much success in their new positions.

Ellis County EMS would also like to welcome Assistant Director Jason Kennedy, Paramedic Kelly Depiesse, and EMT Nick Gerhing to its full-time staff. New additions to their part-time staff include: EMT Axel Basgall, EMT Cody Chaffin, and Paramedic Edward Duensing.

Junction City Fire Department

This summer, the City of Junction City Fire Department received a new 2017 Ford F 550, American Emergency Vehicle (AEV) Traumahawk ambulance from American Response Vehicles. The new ambulance will be replacing a 2006 ambulance that had engine failure.

This fall, Fire Chief Terry Johnson, and EMS/Training Chief Kent Vosburg attended the Management of Emergency Medical Services course at the National Fire Academy/National Emergency Training Center in Emmitsburg, MD.  

Kansas City Kansas Fire Department

Mike Callahan, Deputy Fire Commissioner in the Chicago Fire Department is the new Chief of the Kansas City Kansas Fire Department. Callahan replaces former Fire Chief John Paul Jones who retired after leading the KCK Fire Department since 2007.

Callahan joined the Chicago Fire Department in 1980, serving as firefighter, fire engineer, fire lieutenant, fire captain, fire battalion chief, deputy district chief, district chief, assistant deputy fire commissioner, and, for the last nine years, deputy fire commissioner. The Chicago Fire Department is the second largest fire department in the country, with 5,000 employees and an annual budget of $621 million. Chicago firefighters respond to more than 800,000 emergency calls a year. Callahan has a Master of Sciences in Homeland Security Administration and a dual Bachelor of Arts in Law Enforcement/Justice Administration and Spanish Language.

Callahan started his employment August 27, 2018.


On July 2, Johnson County MED-ACT welcomed five new paramedics to their department: Shawn Bullock, Brill Hernandez, Gerson Solis-Perez, Michael Summerford, and Gary Taylor.

In collaboration with nine regional partners, Johnson County MED-ACT participated in a grant application to obtain 18 new self-contained breathing apparatuses. These units will replace older units that have exceeded their useful life. The application was successful, and they thank the Edwardsville Fire Department Chief Tim Whitham for leading this Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) opportunity and the city of Edwardsville for managing the grant process. The Department of Homeland Security - FEMA administrates the AFG. They expect to receive the new equipment near the end of December 2018.

Newton Fire/EMS

Newton Fire/EMS is pleased to announce the awarding of a KRAF grant for partial funding of the department’s five new Zoll X Series heart monitors. 

The department’s 10-year-old Phillips Heartstart MRX monitors were reaching the end of their lifespan with future models discontinued and a projection of difficulty obtaining parts and service.  Additionally, Zoll X Series monitors are utilized by several county EMS partners with whom Newton Fire/EMS has mutual and automatic aid agreements.  The addition of these new monitors will assist with a seamless transfer of patient care.

Wesley Healthcare

During EMS Week in May, Wesley Healthcare gave out several awards including the Medic of the Year, Fallen Hero, and Crew of the Year. They were pleased to be able to honor several deserving individuals this year.

Wesley Healthcare’s Medic of the Year award was given to Benjamin Kampff. On Feb 12, 2018, Ben helped ED staff with a patient who had a violent history toward healthcare providers. As he entered the room, the patient was found in the corner trying to get something out of his pants. Ben went over and subdued the patient and found out the patient was trying to get a gun out. He called for help and was able to disarm the patient, before anything could happen. He was given the award for his actions of bravery, and safety of the staff and the patient.

Wesley Healthcare’s Fallen Hero award is for the recognition and celebration of prehospital personnel who have passed away yet made a big impact and influence in the profession of EMS. Chy Miller was a medic who touched many people in positive ways. He also acted as a Paramedic instructor for Hutchinson Community College. During his time at HutchCC, he continually produced quality paramedic students—a testimony to his talent. While his life on earth is over, his legacy lives on with HutchCC and the many lives he impacted.

The Wesley Healthcare Crew of the Year award was created to honor those EMS practitioners who work within the community and are the first link in the chain of survival. On December 18, 2017, Paramedic Leigh Chambers and Paramedic Gabe Shults came to work not knowing that they would be called upon for one of the most stressful situations a medic can endure—a child not breathing and pulseless—a child who was found in an icy pond. Upon arrival, they found family performing CPR, and quickly went to work on resuscitating the child. CPR, warming measures, oxygen, ventilation, an IV, and medications to restart the child’s heart, were all initiated. The medics worked diligently, and his heart started to beat again. The child was transported to Wesley Medical Center’s Trauma Team.  January 3, 2018, 16 days after the lifeless child was found, he was able to go home with his family.

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