Described as “rock solid, steady, and constant” by his peers, the 2007 Georgia Emergency Medical Technician of the Year (EMT) is Gordon EMS’s Ben Miller.
The annual award is presented to a currently licensed Georgia EMT-B, EMT, CT, or Paramedic who has significantly contributed to EMS at the community, regional, and/or state level.
Bud Owens, Gordon Hospital’s Administrative Director of Emergency Services said, “Ben is a bright and energetic professional, known for his devotion and personable attitude...he is always willing to take an active role in leadership projects, and is a persistent individual who sets his goals and seeks to accomplish them in a timely manner.”
Throughout his career it is evident that Miller is a man of action, not just words. Last fall, he responded to an accident on I-75 during a rain storm. Upon arrival at the scene, he pulled his ambulance into the emergency lane. Typically, fire services will respond and use their large engines to provide a buffer between interstate traffic and the ambulances. On this particular day, they did not arrive. Ben and his partner, Paramedic Bo Nicholson, began to extricate the patients from the wrecked vehicle and move them into the ambulance for treatment and transport. As they were preparing to load their second patient, they heard the sound of screeching tires and looked up to see a large Lincoln hydroplaning toward them in the emergency lane. Miller was right in the path of the collision. He quickly responded and moved himself, his patient and partner from behind the ambulance seconds before the vehicle smashed into the rear of the ambulance, missing them only by inches. The ambulance and Lincoln were totally destroyed. Miller's quick thinking and rapid reaction saved the lives of his partner, patient and himself.
An EMT since 1984, Miller developed his interest in public safety early in life. Since then he has served as chief of the Gordon County Fire Department, and volunteered for the Plainville station for many years. He is a trained Hazardous Materials Technician, Emergency Responder to Domestic Biological Incidents, and has trained in EMS operations and planning for weapons of mass destruction.
While he admits the nature of his job can cause burn out, he stays engaged by focusing on hobbies and family life. “There are a lot of times when we sacrifice our personal lives for our job. On holidays, when most people are sitting around the Thanksgiving table, we’re risking our lives on the interstate answering calls.”