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Gov. Abbott honors first responders at 2019 Star of Texas Awards

The ceremony honored 50 first responders who lost their lives or were seriously injured in the line of duty.

AUSTIN, Texas — Gov. Abbott honored 50 first responders during the 2019 Star of Texas Awards on Wednesday, Sept. 11, at the Texas State Capitol. 

The Star of Texas Awards were created in 2003 by House Bille 1937 to honor and commemorate those who made "profound commitments while performing their duties" as officers, firefighters, and emergency medical first responders.

"This past year has undoubtedly tested our resilience, but the Texas spirit remains stronger than ever, and that is in part due to the incredible work of the men and women in uniform serving their communities," said Gov. Abbott. "These awards allow us to recognize and celebrate those who put their lives on the line every day to keep us safe." 

Reilly Webb, executive director of the Criminal Justice Division at the Office of Abbott, opened up the ceremony saying that if anyone were to speak to these first responders in the room that they would find that each person would be "dependable, honest, impartial and virtuous." 


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Before introducing the 50 recipients of this award, Abbott addressed that the ceremony was being held on the 18-year anniversary of those who lost their lives in the 9/11 attack, and said "we will always remember."

"To all the men and women who protect and serve, thank you for being the light of justice and peace in our communities," he said. "You are the shield that stands between danger and the people of Texas, and you have our deepest respect and unwavering support."

One of the recipients of this award was Fayette County Deputy CJ Lehmann. 

Lehmann was shot in the face November of 2018, while serving a search warrant in La Grange, Texas.

Credit: Office of the Governor
Credit: Office of the Governor

The 2019 recipients of the Star of Texas Awards are:

Fire Fighters Killed in the Line of Duty 

  • Daniel Edward Hampton – Burnet Fire Department
  • Larry Grant Dalton – Dallas Fire-Rescue Department
  • Marco Antonio Davila – Dallas Fire-Rescue Department
  • Jeffery Lee Delbert – Dallas Fire-Rescue Department
  • Charlie Jaimes – Dallas Fire-Rescue Department
  • Thomas M. Johnson – Dallas Fire-Rescue Department
  • Scott Deem – San Antonio Fire Department

Peace Officers Killed in the Line of Duty

  • Earl J. Givens, III – Dallas Police Department
  • Garrett W. Hull – Fort Worth Police Department
  • Albert Castaneda, Jr. – Grand Prairie Police Department
  • Nathan Hayden Heidelberg – Midland Police Department
  • Raymond Bradley Jimmerson – Nacogdoches County Sheriff’s Office
  • Mark Allen Cox – Real County Sheriff’s Office
  • Korby Lee Kennedy – San Angelo Police Department
  • Moises Sanchez – Texas Department of Public Safety
  • David Jones Fitzpatrick – The Colony Police Department
  • Timothy Gerard Olsovsky – Victoria County Sheriff’s Office
  • Donna Doss – U.S. Customs And Border Protection, U.S. Border Patrol
  • Norman Merkel – U.S. Department Of Justice, U.S. Marshals Service
  • Loren Y. Vasquez – Waller County Sheriff’s Office
  • Lonnie Verdell Burton – Wayland Baptist University Police Department
  • Alejandro “Alex” Martinez – Willacy County Sheriff’s Office
  • Jason Matthew Fann – Yoakum County Sheriff’s Office

Emergency Medical First Responders Seriously Injured in the Line of Duty

  • Steven Ray Holden – U.S. Army

Fire Fighters Seriously Injured in the Line of Duty

  • Brad Jay Phipps – San Antonio Fire Department

Peace Officers Seriously Injured in the Line of Duty

  • Christopher S. Fegley – Arlington Police Department
  • Alejandro "Alex" Quintanilla – Arlington Police Department
  • Derek Baroody – Austin Police Department
  • Luis E. Farias – City of Benavides Police Department
  • Justin Todd Ellis – Dallas Area Rapid Transit Police Department
  • Troy Lee Allison – Dallas Police Department
  • Brannon Germald Barber – Dallas Police Department
  • Javier Leyva – Ector County Sheriff’s Office
  • Steven John McNeill – Ector County Sheriff’s Office
  • Joshua Devin Pool – Ector County Sheriff’s Office
  • Ricardo Rodriguez – Ector County Sheriff’s Office
  • Cody Smith – Ector County Sheriff’s Office
  • Calvin Gustav Lehmann – Fayette County Sheriff’s Department
  • Christopher Gaines – Harris County Constable Precinct 4
  • John Daily – Houston Police Department
  • Luis Fuhlbrigge – Houston Police Department
  • Nestor Garcia – Houston Police Department
  • Alonzo Reid – Houston Police Department
  • Matthew Victor Richard – Houston Police Department
  • Elie Weston Van Horn – Port Arthur Police Department
  • Claudia Ivette Cormier – San Marcos Police Department
  • Justin Ray Holt – Silsbee Police Department
  • Wesley C. Hensley – Texas Attorney General’s Office
  • Travares L. Webb – Texas Department of Public Safety
  • Henry Jennings Gilles – Trinity County Sheriff’s Office

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