Each week we salute one of Central New York's First Responders whose job is keeping us safe, rescuing us when we are in peril, or saving our life at the darkest moments. This week we salute a man who has two roles in serving the community, Barton Paczkowski.

It's not unusual for First Responders to pull double duty, often serving duties with a fire department and an ambulance service.  But Barton does it in a different way than most. He's  a firefighter and a police officer.

Firefighter Paczkowski, serves as a Lieutenant with the Rome Fire Department.  He's been there since 2012.  He's also Officer Paczkowski, patrolling the streets of New Hartford on a part-time basis. Prior to serving with New Hartford, he spent five years with the Kirkland Police Department.

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Barton also has another important duty, he's a girl dad times two. Always finding time to protect and serve our communities and be a role model too. The person nominating him says "he's extremely deserving of recognition."

He's always available to help anyone in need whether it be at work or off-duty. We don't know how he fits it all in! He is the picture of dedication to the community and selflessness of character.

Of course we posed the important question to Barton, when it's time for annual Fire Department vs Police Department basketball game what side to do you play on, he replied, "both." Seriously, thanks Fireman/Officer Paczkowski for what you do keeping us safe and responding in our time of need.


Do you know a first responder that deserves to be recognized? Tell us about someone who should be honored in central New York - a firefighter, police officer, EMT, forest ranger, paramedic, DEC officers, military, rescuers or any other person first on the scene.

Include their name, a picture and why they should be recognized during 'First Responder Friday,' presented by Martin, Harding & Mazzotti.

We'll honor one first responder every Friday and as a way to say thank you, we'll give them a Bundt cake from Nothing Bundt Cakes.

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Martin, Harding & Mazzotti

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