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Crabill, King and Caprara honored

Zoe Greszler • Apr 1, 2017 at 10:00 PM

Every town has its local heroes, and the Norwalk Lions Club took time to recognize three of Norwalk’s own — police officers John Crabill and Allan King and firefighter Craig Caprara.

The Lions Club recognized Crabill as the Officer of the Year, King as the Reserve Officer of the Year and Caprara as the Firefighter of the Year.

Police Capt. David Smith, who honored Crabill with his plaque, was part of the initial process that got Crabill hired on the force in 2013.

“After he left the room, there was a consensus,” Smith said.

“Everybody agreed John was top of the heap. He was unknown prior to the process. For the past four years now John has validated that interview. He is eager to come to work and to show that he loves his job by his work load. John is not he kind of guy you have to push to do something; he’s the kid of guy you have to hold back and tell him ‘Hey, take your time.’ If he’s closest to the call, no matter what his workload is, he’s going to be there. He’s a pleasure to have on my shift and I’m proud he’s on my shift.”

King received Reserved Officer of the Year, showing equal dedication and passion for his job.

“Reserve Al King did not come to us a 21-year-old kid right out of the police academy with a head full of ideas on how we can improve,” Smith said. “Al came to us after retiring from his job and instead of looking for a job because he needed one, he offered us his services. Al always finds something to keep himself busy ... or he’s constantly on the radio asking if I or one of the officers need help. Al is my extra guy every time.” 

Fire chief John Soisson praised Caprara’s four years of hard work and said he’s someone he knows he can rely on.

“Craig has been a paramedic — a really good paramedic — and a very good firefighter,” Soisson said.

“Craig doesn’t actually work one specific shift, he works rotating days with every shift and he has juggles training for fire prevention and inspection, which he does a really good job of. The fire prevention program has done really well. ... I think every year I’ve been with the department we’ve said ‘We have to do preplan, We have to do preplan.’ I gave it to Craig and then I didn’t worry about it. He got it done.

“(What he does) takes a lot of good leadership and a lot of ability,” he added. “We see a lot of good things coming from Craig. I think in the future you’re going to hear a lot as firefighter of the year.”

“It’s easy to do a good job at the career you love to do and just to provide the service that our residents deserve,” Caprara said.

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