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In Memory of Our Deceased Members, 2009-2013

Past APCO International President Jack Keating, a member of the Virginia Chapter, passed away on Friday, February 15, 2013, from complications relating to a broken hip.
Keating retired from a career in the Coast Guard to take an open position as the communications director for the City of West Covina (Calif.) Communications Department. He joined APCO on Feb. 8, 1977. Before his election to the APCO International Board of Officers in 1995, Keating was very active in CPRA (APCO's Southern California Chapter) for many years. He was president of CPRA in 1991. He served as conference chair for the Western States Regional Conference held in Anaheim in 1994. And he was a member of the APCO Regional Conference Manual Review Task Force and served as chair of the Activities and Membership Committee from 1988-1991.
Keating served a term as the association's president from 1998-1999 and was honored with Life Membership at the APCO International Conference & Expo in 1999. Following his retirement from the City of Covina, he and his family moved to Williamsburg, Va., and Keating remained active with Virginia APCO.
Current APCO International President Terry Hall recently had a chance to visit with Keating in his home. "I was humbled to be in the presence of APCO greatness," says Hall. "He will be sorely missed."
Joe L. Hanna, who succeeded Keating as APCO president, says, "On the surface, Jack was a quiet guy, not one who wanted to be center stage, but he was a man of strong beliefs." According to Hanna, Keating was a proponent of partnerships and began efforts to forge a closer relationship with NENA.
"Jack was a very gentlemanly person," says Gary Gray (APCO past president, 1988-1989). "He was very outspoken. He was also very careful not to do things that would waste money that would come out of dispatchers' pockets. He was that committed to not taking advantage of people. He was very sensitive."
"I've known Jack and his wife, Donna, for many years," says APCO 2nd Vice President John Wright. "He was a real advocate for APCO and for public safety. He lived and breathed for the association and seemed to have the time of his life as president. He couldn't do enough for public safety, and that always impressed me. He was a great friend and a mentor."
"He was a great person; always willing to lend a helping hand or explain in detail when one was not sure of what was being requested," says APCO Life Member Helen Rushing. "He was especially patient with those of us who were not well versed in the technology fields."

Courtesy: Public Safety Communications
Nicholas E. Stepaniak, age 31, the Assistant Communications Manager for Stafford County's Emergency Communications Center, passed away Saturday, February 2, 2013.
Nick, was an invaluable member of a select fraternity. He began his career in Myrtle Beach, SC, catching the "bug" that we all call dispatching. He moved to the Fredericksburg, VA area to be closer to family and soon became a dedicated and well respected member of a close-knit team. Nick was the consummate professional, always looking for ways to improve his skills and abilities while helping others to learn and perfect theirs. In 2010, Nick was honored by the Virginia Chapter of APCO as its Training Officer of the Year and was later selected as APCO International's Communications Training Officer. As Training Officer for Stafford County, Nick not only developed an outstanding program while continuing to share his knowledge and expertise with others. When the Regional Training Academy's Dispatcher Program needed an overhaul, Nick participated in that process. His training program has been shared with colleagues in Virginia and across the country. It serves as a foundation for many agencies in the development and success of those who choose to enter the career of a public safety communications officer.
Nick fought a long and courageous battle with cancer which he succumbed to sooner than he or anyone expected. His wife, Brandy, so strong and stalwart was a rock in Nick's life. With his strong support, she completed her education to become a Registered Nurse. With that skill and knowledge, she was able to provide the care he needed and so richly deserved; care delivered by the best RN. To see them together was to see and know two people who had a genuine love and respect for each other. Nick's parents and two sisters can be very proud of their son and brother; an individual who was an example to everyone he came in contact with. A gentle man with a big heart, a strong desire to do the best job he could while continuing to grow and develop both personally and professionally.
He left a positive impact on anyone he came in contact with. His can-do attitude was one that I have never seen and never expect to witness again. On Nick's worse days, during chemotherapy in 2006 up until his death, he faced his health challenges head on. Rarely missing a day from work, he reported at times with a sock to warm his head and offered to provide a head sock to share the experience with co-workers on the midnight shift. Following major surgery this past December, Nick recovered quickly and reported back to work in just a couple of weeks. Maintaining his optimism through adversity Nick learned on Tuesday that his fight was unexpectedly being lost. While hoping for a miracle, his family, co-workers and the PSAP community showered Nick with thoughts and prayers, pictures, memories, accolades and all that could be done. The training center utilized by the 9-1-1 Center has been named the "Nick E. Stepaniak Communications Training Center." (A formal dedication will occur at a future date.) He knew about this recognition and, in usual humble fashion, felt it was just too much. There was nothing we wouldn't or couldn't do to insure Nick knew how much he was loved, respected, appreciated, admired, and treasured both professionally and personally. The impact Nick has left here in Stafford was what you would expect to see from the greatest of men. He was, in the eyes of his public safety family, the most dedicated and hardworking individual. Always contributing. Always moving forward. Always wanting to help others. Always wanting to do more.
Nick loved life and was a man of great character who was driven by the desire to represent the profession he loved so much while serving the citizens of Stafford County.

Stafford County Sheriff's Office
Division of Emergency Communications
William G. "Bill" Jones, Jr., age 62 of Rocky Mount died Thursday, December 30, 2010. Bill recently retired from the Franklin County Sheriff's Office after 29 years of service as a communications officer. He was a member of the Virginia Chapter of APCO and was a United States Navy Veteran. He is survived by his wife, Cathy Jones; son, Will Jones; granddaughter, Haley; and many other family members and friends. He was preceded in death by his parents, William G. Jones, Sr. and Anne Stilwell Jones.
Memorial services were conducted from Flora Funeral Chapel at 2 p.m., Sunday, January 2, with Rev. Coy Thomas officiating. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Police Benevolent Foundation, 2155 Highway 42 S, McDonough, Georgia 30252 or Lights for Life, c/o Town of Rocky Mount, 345 Donald Avenue, Rocky Mount, Virginia 24151. Arrangements by Flora Funeral Service & Cremation Center, Rocky Mount.
The Chapter extends its condolences to Bill's family and to his family at the Franklin County Sheriff's Office.
photo of WadeRon Wade, a Life Member of the Virginia Chapter of APCO, a past president of the Virginia Chapter of APCO (2002-2003), and the retired Communications Superintendent for the City of Roanoke, passed away on Monday, February 1, 2010.
Wade, a lifelong Virginia resident, began his career in public safety with the Roanoke Police Department as a street cop on the Roanoke City Market in 1969. He transferred to the E911 Communications Center as Lead Supervisor in 1972 where his dedication and passion provided tremendous leadership and oversight in technology implementations which improved and enhanced the workplace for professional telecommunications in the City of Roanoke. He retired as 911 Communications Superintendent April 1, 2007.
Ron, as represented by his many years of public service to the Roanoke Community and to the APCO community, loved participating in Virginia APCO, having been a member for 21 years, serving as its President from 2002-2003, as its Fall conference chairman/co-chair for 8 years in the Roanoke Valley, member of the Region 42 800 MHz NPSPAC Committee, and a member of the State EMS Advisory Board's Communications Committee.
In addition to a large family, Ron is survived by his wife and soul mate, Kathryn "Kathy" Wade, his cherished litter mate pups, AAApups-Abby, Andy and Angie who never left his side, and by the entire Virginia 9-1-1 Community.
Ron was a great contributor to our profession, to Virginia APCO, to the City of Roanoke, and to the Commonwealth of Virginia. Ron was always the type of person who rallied to a challenge, loved his work and cared about the dispatchers. He was a loyal and dedicated public servant; he will always be remembered for his leadership both to the City and within the 911 profession. We will miss our friend, we will miss his smile, we will miss his input into our communications community, we will miss him as a colleague, and hope that you will join us in keeping Ron's family in your prayers.

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Wade Remembered During Ceremony At Roanoke 9-1-1
The Virginia Chapter of APCO remembered Chapter Life Member Ron Wade (1948-2010) on June 29, 2010, during a plaque presentation ceremony held at the City of Roanoke E911 Center. APCO Executive Council Delegate Bill Agee spoke at the opening of the presentation and Terry Hall, Second VP for APCO International, presented a plaque honoring and remembering Wade to Michael Crockett, Director of the Roanoke City E911 Center. Members of the Virginia APCO Executive Board present for the ceremony were Julie McKercher, Vice President; Bill Agee, Executive Council Delegate; Emily Totten, Secretary; and Pat Shumate, Member at Large. Representing APCO International was Terry Hall, Second VP.
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photo of ThomasGeorge Thomas, a member of the Virginia Chapter of APCO for 19 years, a past president of the Virginia Chapter of NENA, and the Operations Support Manager of the Chesterfield Emergency Communications Center passed away Saturday morning. George was a great contributor to our profession, to the Chapter and Virginia NENA, to the localities for which he had been associated, and to the Commonwealth. We will miss our friend and hope that you will join us in keeping George's family and the Chesterfield Emergency Communications Center staff in your thoughts and prayers.
George Kain Thomas, 44, of Henrico, passed away Saturday, October 10, 2009. He is survived by his loving wife of 19 years, Sheri S. Thomas; his two sons, Kain H. and Seth C . Thomas, who will greatly miss their dad and best friend; his adored parents, George F. and Maureen J. Thomas, of Henrico; his three sisters, Vicki Miller and husband, Chuck, of Crozet, Cindy Greer and husband, Wayne, of Glen Allen, and Nancy Jernigan and husband, Steve, of Rockville; in-laws, Arnold E. and Mary E. Smith, of Henrico; and numerous nieces and nephews who will greatly miss their "Bubba." George was a graduate of J.R. Tucker High School and James Madison University. He was a past-employee of Henrico County 911 Operations and was presently an Operations Support Manager for Chesterfield County, and a member of Cambridge Baptist Church. George was an avid Redskins fan, who thought everyday was a blessing. Funeral services were held Tuesday, October 13, at Monument Heights Baptist Church, 5716 Monument Avenue.

Thomas Children Educational Fund
George's family has requested that any donations be made to the children's educational fund. If you are interested in donating to the Thomas children education fund, please make checks out to Kain and Seth Thomas and in the memo filed put "Educational Fund". Mail the donations directly to:

Monument Heights Day School
ATTN: Lynn Coxbr
5716 Monument Ave.
Richmond, Va. 23226

Thank you for your support
In Memoriam - Don Scott, E-911 Director, Lee County

Donald Lee Scott, E911 Director and Emergency Coordinator for Lee County, passed away suddenly Saturday afternoon, November 7, 2009 at his home in Pennington Gap. Don was very active in the Southwest Virginia 9-1-1 Users Group and the RPAC-I. He was an active member in APCO and NENA since he began his duties as 9-1-1 Director for Lee County. Don worked very hard in developing the wireline 9-1-1 program for Lee County and was always wanting to learn more in order to bring the best system possible to Lee County. As Don would say "Virginia begins in Lee County, but it's a long way to Richmond". Despite the distance, Don worked extremely hard in developing the 9-1-1 system for Lee County. This was evident by his support and attendance to the Virginia 9-1-1 conferences and the TENA conferences in addition to calling upon his peers in the 9-1-1 community in Southwest Virginia. Our 9-1-1 family has lost a dear friend, comrade, and supporter. Please remember Lee County and Don's family in this very difficult time.
Donald Lee Scott of Pennington Gap, Va. was born in the Monarch Community, Rt. 1 Saint Charles, Va. on Friday, July 23, 1948 and passed away suddenly Saturday afternoon at his home. He was preceded in death by his father, Floyd Scott. Don served in the US Army and was a Vietnam Veteran. He was a member of the United Methodist Church in St. Charles, Va. He was a Member of the UMWof A and was employed by Westmoreland Coal Co. for 25 years, Quebecor Printing for 8 years and for the past 6 years was employed as E911 Director and Emergency Coordinator for Lee County. Don was a volunteer fire fighter of Pennington Gap and Lee County rescue squad for over 35 years. Don is survived by his wife Yetta Kirk Scott of the home. Three sons, Christopher Scott of Pennington Gap, Va. Patrick Scott of Pennington Gap, Va. and Devin Scott of the home. One daughter, Rebecca Hope Scott Sweeney of Capron, Va. Three grandchildren, Daniel, Amber and Whitney Sweeney of Dot, Va. His mother, Vern Scott of Monarch, Va. Two sisters, Faye Mayes of St. Charles, Va. Rebecca Hale and husband Dick of Indianapolis, Ind. One brother, Kenneth Scott and wife Beverly of Kingsport, Tn. Special niece Kelle Newman and husband Chris of Jonesville, Va. Several nieces, nephews, extended family and friends and co-workers.