Seventeen Key West High School students this week graduated the Key West Fire Department’s Firefighters Academy. Proud families, members of the Key West Fire Department, and City officials were on hand during the ceremony to acknowledge the hard work and dedication of these students who have invested two years of training for their future careers as first responders.
These students earned certifications in Firefighter I, Emergency Medical Responder, and Hazmat Awareness.
Capt. Jason Barroso, who leads the academy, praised the group for the tenacity it requires to finish the academy, noting that they would do their grueling physical training in the early hours before heading off to a full day of high school.
Interim City Manager Patti McLauchlin thanked the students for their community spirit.
The two-year fire academy trains future firefighters while they’re attending their final two years of high school and provides them, upon completion, the equivalent training of a Certified Firefighter I, which puts them halfway through the training required to become a Key West Firefighter.
The students are: Oybek Abdugafarov, Michael Balbuena, Ja Khai Blake, Jaden Burchfield, Michael Cates, Jacob Clegg, Nectaly Duarte, Justin Haskin, Wyatt Hughes, Alejandro Lopez, Jeremiah Osborne, Curry Sargent, Anginio Valdez, Camren Watson, Jason Yarbrough, Blake Arencibia, and Brent Bishop.
The Key West Fire Department Instructors are: Lt. Angelina Maltese, Lt. Andrew Perez, Lt. Tom Bouchard, Lt. Tim Anson, Lt. John Torres, FF/Paramedic Carlos Barba, FF/Paramedic Jenn Kouri, FF/Paramedic Kory Rodriguez, Capt. Greg Bringle, Capt. Keith Sellers, S.C. Mark Sellers, and Capt. Jason Barroso.