From Staff Reports and the Apopka Fire Department
Austin Duran, the 25-year-old Apopka Fire Department Firefighter who died in July from injuries sustained in an accident at Fire Station 1, has been named the 2022 Firefighter of the Year in a vote by his fellow firefighters. Duran was a member of the AFD's Explorer Program while in high school and joined the department in 2020.
On the AFD's Facebook page, they write:
"Please join us in congratulating the Duran Family as their son and our brother Austin Duran has been voted as the 2022 Firefighter of the Year!
Austin joined our fire department family as a Fire Explorer during high school and started working with the Apopka Fire Department in July 2020. During his time with our department, Austin showed integrity, a hard work ethic, pride in the job, an eagerness to learn, and an unwavering willingness to help others.
Over these last eight months, Austin has been our strength, our courage, and our light shining in our darkest night. His positive attitude and innocent outlook on life continually shined through in that smile we all remember and grew to love and will be the definition of the legacy he has left behind."
Michael Duran, Austin's father, spoke directly to his son in a Facebook post about Austin's award.
"I love you and miss you every single day, kid. You have made me proud every day since the day you were born. And you continue to do so. I love you always, Bucket, and will miss you forever."
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