Office of the Governor Rick Perry

Gov. Perry Presents Wildland Firefighting Teams with Governor's Award for Historic Preservation

*Note - Gov. Perry frequently departs from prepared remarks.
Wednesday, April 04, 2012  •  Austin, Texas  •  Speech

It's indicative of the wide range of challenges we face here in Texas that even as we honor a group of individuals for their noble efforts during last year's wildfires, we're dealing with the aftermath of a round of entirely different disasters.

Yesterday in North Texas we got another sobering reminder about how quickly nature can turn on us and the devastation that can result when storms like that hit highly-populated areas.

The Dallas-Fort Worth area was hit by up to 13 tornadoes that tore across multiple cities and counties and affected a large number of families across the region.

I'll be heading up to Dallas tomorrow to see the damage first hand, and talk to first responders on the scene.

While we're thankful there has been no reported loss of life at this point, we know a lot of North Texans are digging through the wreckage of their homes...and businesses, and our thoughts and prayers are with all of them today.

In any disaster like this, Texas is blessed with an emergency response team that's second to none, as our courageous first responders on the front lines execute plans developed and honed through years of trial and experience.

We have to constantly plan and prepare for all types of disasters because for all the ample blessings nature has bestowed upon our state, few states have to face her fury on so many fronts.

The individuals here today being honored for their valor during last year's wildfire season know all about nature's fury.

In the midst of a season that saw nearly 4 million acres of Texas consumed by wildfires, these individuals, this team, helped protect some of the most historically valuable structures in our state.

Working on very little food, and even less sleep, they worked diligently to protect historic structures in Possum Kingdom, Bastrop and Davis Mountains State Parks.

The buildings they protected represent a connection to our state's past, and thanks to their efforts will stand for generations to come.

They are worthy recipients of this year's Governor's Award for Historic Preservation, as awarded by the Texas Historic Commission, and a fine example of the sort of selfless sacrifice that we see in Texas whenever danger strikes.

The noble tradition of neighbor helping neighbor lives on, just as I know it's continuing throughout North Texas today.

So, it's now my honor to present this award for a job well done.

Texas Governor Rick Perry and the Texas Historical Commission present the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department’s Wildland Firefighting Team with the prestigious Governor’s Award for Historic Preservation on April 4, 2011 at the Texas State Capitol.
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