GCFD Honor Guard to honor local businessman

By Mark Minton
Garden City Telegram – April 24, 2017

Honor Guard members are, clockwise from left, Ryan Powers, Hunter Carson, Jeremy Kemp, John Bemis, Casey Harmon, Luke Freeman, Jeremy Moore, Adam Patterson and Jacob Gonzales. Photo by G Robertson Photography. Click on photo to view full-size.

The Garden City Fire Department’s Honor Guard will be hosting a dinner to honor local businessman Amro Samy with the first-ever Keeper of the Flame Award.

The award, intended for local residents who consistently give back to the community, will be presented at 6 p.m. tonight at the Clarion Inn, 1911 E. Kansas Ave. Tickets will cost $50 per person and are available for purchase at the Central Fire Station, 302 N. Ninth St., or at the Clarion Inn. Proceeds will be dedicated to the GCFD’s Honor Guard, which operates on a volunteer basis.

Adam Patterson, a member of the Honor Guard, said the group plans to continue the award each year, and that it will be given to members of the community who “give back, kind of like we do as firemen.”

“No matter what, we’re always lending a helping hand and that’s kind of what our criteria went off of, not just with public safety but with the whole community,” Patterson said. “We’re always there for anything that somebody would happen to need.”

When Samy was asked to comment on his designation as the first-ever winner of the Keeper of the Flame Award, he said he is “speechless, but honored.”

Samy works in partnership with local businessman Cecil O’Brate, and together they own and operate Samy’s Spirits & Steakhouse, Old Chicago, Parrot Cove Indoor Water Park, the Heritage Hotel and the Sleep Inn. They also work together on local housing developments.

Samy has been a part of the community since April 2000, when he moved here and started working at the Southwind Country Club. Samy said he and his staff always do what they can to give back to the community.

“We’ve been blessed with the community’s support, so we’ve always been trying to give back to the community, me and my partner, Cecil,” he said. “We just like to give back to the community, and I think that maybe played a part in my nomination and winning the award.”

Patterson said Samy was selected from a pool of six candidates. Patterson noted that Samy was there for the fire department when local firefighter Ron Peek died in the line of duty on Jan. 22, 2015.

“When that happened, Samy came to us, offered whatever we needed,” Patterson said. “He was there to help us. He’s that way with anybody in the community. Anybody that needs help, he’s lending a hand no matter what.”

The local Honor Guard, which started in 2011, honors fallen firefighters from across the state at funerals, and participates in parades and special events. The Keeper of the Flame award will be the first presented as a unique award invented by the group.

Patterson said talks about the award started around the first of the year. He added that the intent was to create an event similar to the GCFD’s annual awards dinner, when various members of the fire department are honored for their years of service.

According to Patterson, the Honor Guard will develop forms for the community to submit nominations for next year’s award. He said the form will be ready within the next couple of weeks.


Posted by Gwen Dorr Romine, KSFFA Webmaster
KSFFA’s Fire News Blog Home Page

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