Horry County Fire Rescue celebrates graduation of newest recruits

CONWAY, SC (WBTW) – Horry County Fire Rescue graduated its newest class of recruits Friday afternoon.

A total of 22 firefighter/EMTs and firefighter/paramedics were honored at the ceremony that took place at Horry-Georgetown Technical College in Conway. Family, friends and mentors filled the school’s auditorium to support some of the area’s newest first responders.

Horry County Fire Rescue Battalion Chief Brian VanAernem says the recruits went through approximately 12 weeks of recruit school – which prepared them for various emergency situations and emergency service.

“Starting [Saturday], they’ll go on the street and for a few more weeks, have to do some mentoring,” VanAernem explained. “As soon as they get finished with that mentoring, then they’ll be released to staffing out on the street.”

Horry County Fire Rescue officials say the addition of the firefigher/EMTs and firefighter/paramedics will help fill a staffing gap the department has dealt with in recent months. ‘

“These 22 guys – they’ll start filling the spots on the schedule. This is actually going to be a tremendous help for us here over probably not the next month but the month after,” VanAernem said.

Two battalion chiefs were also promoted and took their oaths at Friday’s ceremony.