PALMDALE – The City of Palmdale recognized its finest in public safety at the Palmdale City Council Meeting Wednesday.
Awards were presented to LASD Deputy George Oriel, Firefighter Specialist Rudy Sanchez, City of Palmdale Parking Enforcement Supervisor Dulce Gomez, and Parking Enforcement Officer Mathew McClanahan. CHP Officer Jonathan Yochim was recognized but unable to attend.
Deputy Oriel has served in the Antelope Valley for the past 18 years, both in Lancaster and Palmdale. He has a long career in safety and law enforcement, beginning his career as a security officer for Disney and MGM Studios before joining the Sheriff’s Department. Oriel has worked patrol assignments, traffic details, and schools and currently is the City Liaison for the City of Palmdale. He will retire from the Sheriff’s Department at the end of the year.
Firefighter Specialist Rudy Sanchez has been with the fire service for 15 years, 12 with the Los Angeles County Fire Department and three previous years with Cal-Fire. He worked at the city of Glendale as a paramedic prior to coming to the Los Angeles County Fire Department. Currently assigned to Fire Station 93 in the City of Palmdale, Sanchez has served as Rescue Youth Coordinator and Mentor, MDA Coordinator, Department EMT skills instructor and Junior Fire Setter Intervention Specialist. In addition, Sanchez has been involved with the training and mentorship of 10 paramedic trainees, eight probationary fire fighters, and nine Rescue Youths.
Parking Enforcement Supervisor Dulce Gomez and Parking Enforcement Officer Matthew McClanahan were recognized for their efforts in creating the City’s “Good Parking Tickets” campaign, which ran through the winter holiday season. Individuals were given “good parking” tickets and passes to the Palmdale Playhouse for displaying good parking habits.
“We had a great response from people,” Gomez said. “We gave away about 70 good parking tickets and got a lot of positive feedback.”
Officer Yochim entered the California Highway Patrol Academy in May 2002. Upon his graduation from the Academy, he was assigned to the West Valley Area Office. Yochim arrived to the Antelope Valley Area Office in August 2007 and was selected by management as the alternate VIN/School Bus/Tow Officer in 2009. He is a key member of the Area’s Fatal Accident Investigation Team (FAIT), was selected to attend the advanced accident investigation course and was recently accepted into the Traffic Accident Reconstruction (TAR) series.
City of Palmdale Community Service Officer Walter Andrew, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department Deputy Raymundo Wilson, and Los Angeles County Sheriff Explorer Nicholas Hicks were honored with commendations for their heroic efforts in saving a man trapped underneath a car on March 21 in the 2100 block of West Avenue P-8.
Since 1992, the City of Palmdale has honored individuals who work in the public safety area. For more information, call the public safety and community relations department at 661-267-5181.
(Information via press release from the City of Palmdale.)