Mayor Rahm Emanuel, Police Superintendent Garry F. McCarthy and Fire Commissioner Jose Santiago today honored the exemplary service of Chicago Police Department and Chicago Fire Department personnel at the Carter Harrison and Lambert Tree Awards ceremony at City Hall.
“Today, we stand together as a City to honor those who have demonstrated extraordinary acts of bravery to protect residents in neighborhoods throughout our city,” say Mayor Rahm Emanuel. “Police officers and firefighters are at their best when conditions are at their most challenging, serving our neighborhoods with bravery and distinction. They are truly Chicago’s Finest.”
Police Officer Abdullah Beyah received Lambert Tree Award and nineteen members received Special Honorable Mentions. Captain/EMT Mauricio Rodriquez received the Carter Harrison Award and six members received Special Honorable Mentions. The Fire Department also presented four additional awards: the Firefighter Award of Valor to Captain/EMT Alfred J Kiefer, the Richard G. Albrecht Award of Merit to District Chief William C. Vogt, and Special Honorable Mentions were also awarded to Lt. Ronald Eillingsen and Firefighter Joseph Atkins
About the recipients:
2013 Carter Harrison Award – Captain/EMT Mauricio Rodriquez
While working a fire in a two-story building near 64th and Marshfield in Englewood in January of this year and following the faint sound of someone calling for help, Captain/EMT Mauricio Rodriquez fought flames and choking smoke to search and locate three men, two were unconscious and failing while a third was semi-conscious and moaning for help. Captain Rodriguez took charge and assisted getting the first victim out then returned in the zero visibility and found the second victim and removed him as well.
2013 Lambert Tree Award – Police Officer Abdullah Beyah
Office Beyah and his partners observed large waste dumpsters positioned to block entry to several alleys, a method used by gang members to plan a getaway prior to a shooting. The Officers then heard multiple gunshots fired in very close proximity and saw an armed offender fleeing the scene. Officers responding to the shooting found a murder victim, shot multiple times. Officer Beyah chased the offender on foot while his partners continued in the squad car. As Officer Beyah began catching up in the pursuit, the offender turned and fired his gun at the Officer. Officer Beyah quickly dropped to his knees and returned fire, striking the offender. Despite sustaining injuries to his knees and legs, Officer Beyah placed the offender in custody with the help of assisting units. A 19-inch 9mm Glock semi-automatic handgun with an extended magazine was recovered at the scene. Due to the work of Officer Beyah, and others responding, the offender was charged with First Degree Murder, Attempt Murder of a Police Officer, and Aggravated Discharge of a Firearm at a Police Officer.
About the Lambert Tree and Carter Harrison Awards
The Lambert Tree and Carter Harrison Awards are the Police and Fire Departments highest honor. The awards date to 1885 when Judge Lambert Tree donated $700 to the City of Chicago for a gold medal to be presented to a heroic firefighter. Mayor Carter Harrison responded by matching the request so that a police officer could be honored as well. The Awards are rotated yearly between the Fire and Police Department so that neither award is deemed superior to the other. For instance, last year the Police Department received the Carter Harrison Award; this year, the Police Department received the Lambert Tree Award.