Any person who runs toward a burning structure or responds to an accident scene in the middle of the night no matter the conditions must be someone special. When their peers praise them for their work ethics and leadership, they are extra special. This week we send our First Responder Salute to the extraordinary, Robert "Little Bear" Parry with Mohawk Valley Ambulance Corp Inc (MOVAC) and the Herkimer Fire Department.

One look at Robert and you know why the nickname, "Bear" stuck. The "Little" part comes from his father who is nicknamed, "Bear." And like his dad, Robert has made serving the community his lifelong career. Dad served with the Deerfield Fire Department for as long as Robert can remember and Little Bear spent 15 years with the Schuyler Volunteer Fire Company before recently becoming full-time with the Herkimer Department.

Robert has also been with MOVAC since 2012, currently serving as full-time Deputy Chief and Paramedic.  At one time he also served with the Herkimer County Sheriff's Department. While his resume is impressive, it's what Robert's co-workers add to the accolades that sets him apart.

He’s hard working and still finds time for his family. Little Bear is essential to the people of Herkimer county and shows it by his countless hours of hard work and dedication to them.

You most likely won't see Robert, father of two small boys, around town for awhile. He's in the midst of an 11 week training session at the New York State Fire Academy, learning new techniques and earning more certifications.

Robert thanks for what you do serving our community and the willingness to learn more to perform your job to the upmost ability.

Do you know a first responder that deserves to be recognized? Tell us about someone who should be honored in Central New York - a firefighter, police officer, EMT, forest ranger, paramedic, DEC officers, military, rescuers, front line workers, or any other person first on the scene.

Include their name, a picture and why they should be recognized during 'First Responder Friday." We'll honor one first responder every Friday and as a way to say thank you, we'll give them a Bundt cake from Nothing Bundt Cakes.

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