ROCKLAND — A veteran firefighter was honored Monday evening, June 6, by the Rockland City Council.

Rusty Barnard was given a commendation by the Council for 20 years of service. He is a firefighter/paramedic.

“Without a doubt, Rusty is one of the best paramedics in Maine. His patient care skills are amazing and I have learned so much from him over the last 20 years. Rockland is lucky to have such a well rounded employee,” Fire Chief Christopher Whytock said.

Councilor Louise MacLellan-Ruf said she has become more appreciative of emergency crews.

“I’m more and more and more appreciative of the work you do, including Saturday’s event and how difficult it is to be a first responder. To stick with it for 20 years is a huge achievement,” MacLellan-Ruf said.

Councilor Sarah Austin also referenced the Saturday, June 4, incident when a building collapsed on a worker on Crescent Street, ultimately killing the man. She said it was tremendous Barnard has responded to emergencies for decades, serving the community.

City Manager Tom Luttrell said he looks forward to many more years of service from Barnard.