the Year: KFD's Plough humbled by honor from state's American Legion
KOKOMO – Scott
Plough, a firefighter with the Kokomo Fire Department, was awarded
Firefighter of the Year by The American Legion, Department of Indiana,
a distinction that Plough said left him humbled. Plough, who has been with
the KFD since 2006, specified that being selected by a group of
military veterans from multiple wars, who form the deciding body for
the American Legion award, was particularly an honor.
“Those are people that
you usually look at them and you should be telling them … ‘thank you,
we respect you for what you’ve done for us,’ and for them to turn that
around and say ‘we respect you too’ or ‘we think you need to be
recognized,'” is a great feeling, Plough said.
To win the state-level
award, the process has to start locally. The KFD administration
selected Plough to represent the department within the fifth district.
There are 11 districts in Indiana.
Fire Chief Nick Glover
said Plough was selected because of his local service, as well as his
military service – Plough is in the United States Air Force Reserves.
“He’s a really sharp firefighter,” Glover added, saying he thinks it’s
important for people who serve to be recognized.
Plough said he had to put
together a packet detailing his work with the fire department coupled
with his community service. Each nominee submits a packet, and that’s
used to select the top firefighter from each district, and from there,
they go to a state convention. That’s where the Firefighter of the Year
is selected, as well as the top police officer and EMS.
Plough said he didn’t
know he had won the state award when he went to Indianapolis for the
convention, and he was surprised when his name was called.
Currently, Plough’s the
driver of Rescue 1. He’s responsible for getting the engine to a scene
safely, and keeps track of equipment.
It’s a job that forces
you to remain aware, he said. While driving the huge engine to a scene,
he’s responsible for the safety of everyone on board, and for other
“You drive to a
stoplight, and if it’s green, you’re 100 percent natural reaction is to
go, but you don’t know there’s a … fire truck coming through the
intersection, so I need to be very cognitive of all that,” Plough said.
It might seem like a
daunting responsibility to many but, Plough said, like any job, you
learn the ropes – like what to look out for at an intersection.
But the best days, he
said, are the ones when no calls come in at all – because it means
people are safe.
“Any time I have to work,
it’s a bad situation for somebody,” he said.
That being said, it’s
always good to know you’re helping someone when they need it, he said.
“You may go on a car
accident or a fire, and then people will show up … and they’ll say
‘thank you, I’m the guy who was in the accident the other day,’ and
that’s a very humbling thing, too," he said.
Plough’s uncle also is a
firefighter, and that’s where he said he found the inspiration to
follow that career path.
“I love the fact it’s
different every single day,” he said. “I never know what I’m going to
It’s a job that allows
him to form a unique bond with other firefighters, regardless of
whether they’ve met or not.
“There’s an instant
connection there,” he said.
Plough thanked the local
Post 6 and the American Legion for the nomination, and said he’s
appreciative of their recognition of first responders.
Glover said he and the
department of proud of Plough.
“It’s an honor for me as
chief of the department … we’re really proud of Scott, and things he’s
accomplished not only here at the fire department, but also in his life
with the military,” Glover said.
According to an American
Legion, Department of Indiana press release, Plough has taken part in
multiple charitable events including the 911 Slugfest Boxing Match for
the Make A Wish Foundation and the EOD Warrior Foundation. He has also
attained numerous fire service certifications.
Cody Neuenschwander can be reached at
765-454-8570 or by email at email@example.com