EMT of the year recipient, Joseph Lemont of Durham Fire Department. Contributed photo. 

“I decided a long time ago that I wanted to help people,” Lieutenant Joseph Lemont of the Durham Fire Department said. “I believed that the best way to do that was to become a firefighter and EMT.”

Lemont’s work helping others is being recognized by the American Legion, Department of Maine, as their EMT of the year.

“I like being able to make a difference on someone’s worst day,” said Lemont, who is the first from Durham Fire Department to get this recognition. “I am very honored to receive this award. Many people in this job work very hard and do their jobs well, and sometimes it can go unnoticed.”

Durham firefighters are often cross-trained for fire suppression and medical services. Lemont is one of 15 firefighters from the department trained as an emergency medical technician. He served as a firefighter for six years and four years as an EMT.

“My job is constantly changing. Every day is different,” he said. “It could be a routine medical call, a fire, or a car accident, so I have to be very adaptable. When people call an ambulance, it is something that they feel is an emergency, so it is my job and my ability to help them through that, and for a small community like Durham, sometimes people would come up to me and thank me. It is just a great feeling to be able to serve my community.”

Lemont discovered that he wanted to become a firefighter and EMT while in the fifth grade at Wiscasset Primary School when firefighters visited and talked about their jobs. Watching them explain the importance of their careers and the risks they take to help people sparked his interest.


However, before becoming a firefighter he was a senior airman and job security forces member in the Air Force, where he served for six years.

“In the military, I served my country, and when I returned home, I was able to serve locally,” Lemont said.

The Legion will present him with this award on June 11 at Jeff Catering and Event Center in Brewer during their 103rd annual state convention.

Fire Chief Rob Tripp is one member of Lemont’s “fire family” who will attend to support him.

“It is no surprised that Joe Lemont was picked as EMT of the year for the American Legion,” Tripp said. “He is what every EMT wants to be. He is knowledgeable, experienced, personable, and caring. You cannot ask for a more dedicated individual who balances work, family, and the veterans all the time. We are very proud of him.”

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