Hillsborough County Fire Rescue Volunteer Firefighter of the Year
Reserve Firefighter John A. Fragomeni
On June 14, 2013, a flatbed wrecker traveling south on Interstate 75 lost control and collided with the inside barrier wall of the bridge, north of the Alafia River. The wrecker, hauling bulldozers, went off the bridge and fell over 45 feet landing on the north, marshy shoreline of the Alafia River. En route to meet with a client for his current employer, Reserve Firefighter John Fragomeni witnessed the accident and immediately took action to rescue the driver.
Although off-duty, John acted without hesitation. He slide down a steep embankment, struggled through thick marshland and brush, and found the driver still alive. John took action with an on-duty Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office Deputy to assist the driver through the muck and into a nearby fisherman’s boat. The boat then transported the accident victim to a Hillsborough County Rescue Unit. The driver was taken to a local hospital in stable condition due in part to John’s quick response.
Originally from the Maryland/DC area, John and his family moved to Florida in 2001. John went to the Fort Myers Fireman Academy in 2007 and the EMT training locally, immediately after high school. After graduating from the academy, he began serving as a volunteer firefighter with Station 27. After three years of volunteering, John was promoted to volunteer Captain with Hillsborough County Station 27 and served in this capacity for two years. John received the Volunteer Firefighter of the Year in 2008 and Volunteer Officer of the Year Award in 2012. In addition to today’s recognition, John recently received the Jeffrey Holt Reserve Responder Award. For the past year, John has been a Reserve Firefighter with Station 7 in Brandon and is actively pursuing a career with Hillsborough County Fire and Rescue.