‘I AM proud of him’ said the wife of a treasured first responder who dedicated much of his time to the people of Uttoxeter as he received a prestigious posthumous award.
Liz Bailey spoke of her pride as the late Cliff Bailey, of Denstone, was awarded the Posthumous Special Award of Recognition from West Midlands Ambulance Service to recognise his tireless work with the Dove Valley Community First Responders, which covers Uttoxeter, Alton, Denstone and the surrounding villages.
The beloved 63-year-old passed away in August after battling stomach cancer but his name very much lives on as he was the founder of the group.
Since its introduction, the group has responded to thousands of emergencies, earning numerous citations and honours along the way, thanks to Mr Bailey.
Mrs Bailey said: “Cliff would be very proud to have got this award and I am very proud for him.
“I am obviously very proud of Cliff and what he did. It is nice for him to be recognised by the people he worked with.
“They sent me a beautiful basket of flowers, which were greatly appreciated. The ambulance service has been extremely good to me.” Mr Bailey’s award was collected by his colleague and friend Anthony Coates.
Describing the popular figure, the ambulance service said: “Cliff was a character who lived life to the full and spent a great deal of time helping and serving his local community.
“It is a privilege and an honour for the trust to recognise the work of the late Cliff Bailey.” The awards ceremony was held to honour members of the public from across the West Midlands region who have gone beyond the call of duty to help save lives and support the work of West Midlands Ambulance Service’s 4,000 staff.
The event, sponsored by Cardiac Science and Mills and Reeve, was held at The International Centre, in Telford, and recognised the efforts of volunteer car drivers, St John Ambulance, the British Heart Foundation, Community First Responders and other voluntary organisations and businesses.
Addressing the audience, West Midlands Ambulance Service chief executive Anthony Marsh said: “Tonight is an opportunity to stand back and reflect on the excellent work that you do and to say ‘thank-you’.
“Very often we don’t say thank-you enough. I’d like to say how very proud I am of all of you; all of our volunteers, all of our staff regardless of the role you fulfill. Be assured of my continued support.” The trust’s chairman, Sir Graham Meldrum said: “Time it is precious thing. What we are here to celebrate is the people who give up a very special component of their life called time.
“Today, everybody is under such a great deal of pressure. The amount of time people have got to spend is quite limited and what we are here for today is to celebrate the people who have chosen to give up that element of time to the dedication of humanity, the public they serve in all the different ways and the different ways they will continue to serve.”