GREENSBURG — The Greensburg Breakfast Optimist Club, Mayor Dan Manus, and various city leaders and firemen past and present, gathered before dawn Thursday at Greensburg Fire Department Station One to break bread and award Randy and Marilyn Hoeing a dual Fireman of the Year Award.

“The Greensburg Optimist Club has honored a Greensburg Fire Fighter since 1996,” said Assistant Fire Chief Brian Wenning.

Reading a list of qualities ideal to an honored firefighter — public service, dedication, spirit of service and optimism, being just a few — Wenning said, “As many of you know, it can be very difficult to single out one person for this award. In fact, most firefighters display these attributes and many more.”

Wenning continued, prefacing the announcement with a laundry list of qualities this year’s recipients possess: “Assistant Fire Chief for 23 years, takes care of the department’s communications and radio equipment, does all the department’s incident reporting and managing of these reports, heads up the Inspection Division to accomplish more than 700 fire inspection yearly, and will be retiring next year after 32 years of service.”

Wenning then said, “Now, for the first time, we’ll be giving a dual award this year. This young lady has been instrumental in fire prevention and public education, helping children learn the basics of exiting their homes in case of fire and playing the role of EDITH (Exit Drills In The House) with a rap and dance routine that has delighted kids for years. The 2019 Optimist Firefighter of the Year Award [recipients are] Randy and Marilyn Hoeing.”

The Hoeings stood to thunderous applause and approached the podium.

Wenning continued, noting Randy will be retiring next year after 32 years of service and describing how Marilyn had become instrumental in fashioning the EDITH program for youngsters.

Randy thanked the gathering, the Optimist Club and the community for allowing him to serve and said, “This award really goes to all of the guys. The sum of the parts makes it.”

Marilyn continued, echoing her husband, “It’s been nice to be a part of this community for these many years, and thanks for taking care of my firefighter!”

Contact Bill Rethlake at 812-663-3111, ext 217011 or email

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