Police Chief John Ortis (left) poses for a photo with Officer Josh Gomez, firefighter Josh Nugent, and Fire Chief Tim Campbell. Gomez and Nugent received officer and firefighter of the year awards from the Hill Country 100 Club. Staff photo by Dakota Morrissiey
The Granite Shoals City Council recognized two of the city’s first responders for awards they recently received from the Hill Country 100 Club. Also during the meeting on Tuesday, March 14, the council announced the first-ever Granite Shoals Meet the Pilots event and asked for volunteers for an upcoming cleanup of a stretch of RR 1431, both taking place on April 1.
FIRST RESPONDER AWARDS
Police Officer Josh Gomez and firefighter Josh Nugent were named Officer of the Year and Firefighter of the Year on March 2 by the Hill Country 100 Club, a nonprofit supporting area first responders. Police Chief John Ortis and Fire Chief Tim Campbell nominated each of the men and brought them before the council on Tuesday.
Nugent started part time with the Granite Shoals Fire Department in 2020 and became a full-time member in 2021.
Campbell cited his discipline, positive attitude, and big-picture thinking.
“It took me all of about two seconds to make my decision,” Campbell said about the nomination. “If I had to write a book as to what a true firefighter would look like, I would look to Josh for many of those qualities.”
Ortis fought to recruit Gomez right out of the police academy in 2020 but lost him to another department. By 2021, the Granite Shoals chief won him over and brought him into the department. Ortis even officiated Gomez’s wedding in June 2022.
“I started recruiting as soon as I met him,” Ortis said. “I saw something in him.”
The chief said Gomez has been integral to the department.
“Since I’ve taken over as chief, he has been one of my right hands,” Ortis said.
The Hill Country 100 Club has a membership stretching across Burnet, Llano, Blanco, and Lampasas counties. The volunteer-based organization provides support to the families of first responders who were killed or injured in the line of duty.
MEET THE PILOTS
Councilor Phil Ort announced that the Granite Shoals Airport Advisory Committee will hold its first Meet the Pilots event on April 1 from 9-11 a.m. at the Granite Shoals Airpark, 810 Mystic Drive. People of all ages can check out several planes, chat with pilots and visit with Granite Shoals first responders.
The council is seeking volunteers to take part in another community event, the Don’t Mess with Texas Trash-off on April 1. The city is teaming up with the Hill Country Litter Lifters to pick up trash along RR 1431 between Granite Shoals and Marble Falls. Contact Tom Rapp at firstname.lastname@example.org or 303-887-5649 to learn more or volunteer.