Home LOCAL PARIS Paris EMS celebrates 40 years serving Lamar County

Paris EMS celebrates 40 years serving Lamar County

by MyParisTexas
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On September 1, 1979, with only two ambulances and a three-man crew, Paris EMS pulled their first shift serving the citizens of Lamar County. 

This month, they’ll celebrate 40-years of service. 

With great growth comes great memories and as the department celebrates, they are also reflecting on the positive changes that have come over the past four decades. 

Currently, Paris EMS employs 21 full-time paramedics and 12-plus part-time EMTs/Paramedics. Our local EMS services are run by three MICU ambulances 24 hours a day, seven days a week. 

The department also provides inter-facility transfers, which are run by one BLS ambulance seven days a week, as well as up to three 24hr long-distance transfer trucks. Over the many years, Paris EMS has grown its fleet and staff to now have four stations that serve both the city and the county. 

“EMS has come a long way from the start; their services have become more complex resulting from the growth,” retired EMS paramedic of 23-years Rick Browning said, “they’ve stood the test of time.”

There is a long list of paramedics that have served the county and the city over the last 40-years, and each one you speak with, whether retired, part-time, reserve or full-time; they all say that the passion for serving the community is the same no matter who you talk to.

Browning joined Paris EMS in 1995 and said over his many years of serving he has been in many different positions and has seen many colleagues come and go. 

“There are the few that have never wavered and still serve this community as a paramedic.”

Browning says Dr. Sharon Malone, Paris EMS Medical Director, is one lady who shows no bounds when it comes to supporting her paramedics and staff.

“She’s a big part of the success for Paris EMS, and her personnel contact with her staff is something amazing,” he said, “she is always there no matter the time of day or night for us here, and I know she has great respect for her workers, and vice-versa.”

Another long-time asset to the department Browning says is Kent Klinkerman, who is now the Director.

“He’s served Paris well and continues to serve the community as a whole. He’s been the key to success in seeing the department grow in strength and service over the long time he’s served,” he said.

Over the many years as the calls came in quicker, and ambulances dispatched more and more; Browning said one factor that genuinely puts Paris EMS on the map is the consistency to which they deliver care to patients.

Although he retired in 2018, Browning said that serving on the Faught Fire Department allows him to still work alongside his former colleagues; just in a new role.

“I can still assist them when needed, and that makes me proud of what I was a part of, and what I am still a part of, it’s still family,” he said.

Browning is one of many paramedics in lamar County that has more than just admiration for the department and staff. 

Missy Fox is another retired paramedic who alongside Browning appreciates the opportunity she had to be a part of not only the first responder family but the Paris EMS family as well.

Fox began her medical career as a paramedic with Paris EMS, then after retirement, she continued her love of serving the community and went to nursing school.

“I was a paramedic for twenty years and retired to become an RN,” Fox said.

She further added that having been a paramedic for so long, the learning was invaluable as she pursued her dreams of becoming a nurse.

“I’m grateful for all the people I have worked with; there were so many mentors for me that I can never really thank them enough for what they taught me,” she said, “we were a pretty tight-knit group, not just within EMS but other first responder departments as well. We all worked together great, and we all had each other’s backs.”

Fox who was born and raised in Lamar County said her time with EMS was one that she treasured. Adding that the department has worked hard, and continues to work hard to make sure citizens are taken care of in their time of need.

“I’m not sure who got the most out of my time as a paramedic, whether it was the community or me,” she said with a laugh, “all I know is that I wanted to serve my community and I got so much out of being apart of the EMS family here.”

Now, as the department sets to load memories and share them on their social media page, they will also be selling collector’s t-shirt. This is an excellent way for the community to be apart of celebrating their significant milestone.

A portion of the proceeds from t-shirt sales will go to the Think Child Safety Program, which was started by Paris EMS back in 1992.

“Help us celebrate 40 years, 1979-2019, by getting one of our collector’s T-Shirts and leaving comments about what you think about the Paramedics the serve Lamar County,” Paris EMS said.

To grab your $15 collector t-shirt by contacting The T-shirt Shoppe Paris.

Sept. 1, is the official anniversary day for Paris EMS, and with the department has built a fleet ready to roll at any moment, those that are part of the EMS family past and present can’t wait to see what is in store for the future. 

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