Countryside Fire and Life Safety Director Tony Rodkey (right) stands next to Fire Chief Chuck Smith after being awarded the Fire & Life Safety Award on May 10. | Provided Photo

The Countryside Fire Protection District’s fire and life safety director, who is known as “Firefighter Tony,” was awarded by the state fire marshal for his education work with children.

Fire and Life Safety Director Tony Rodkey of the Countryside Fire Protection District received the Fire & Life Safety Award on May 10.

Rodkey was presented the award by the Illinois State Fire Marshal Matt Perez in Springfield.

The Fire and Life Safety Award is presented to recognize the “extraordinary efforts in furtherance of fire prevention and life safety” by fire departments, firefighters and staff.

Rodkey, also known by the community as “Firefighter Tony,” was accompanied in Springfield by Countryside Fire Chief Chuck Smith for the presentation of the prestigious award.

The presentation took place during the 29th Annual Illinois Fallen Firefighter Memorial and Firefighting Medal of Honor Awards Ceremony.

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Rodkey was nominated by educators who have seen first-hand the connection Firefighter Tony has with the students of the five different school districts that Countryside serves, Smith said.

The Countryside Fire Protection District covers Vernon Hills and Indian Creek along with parts of Mundelein, Hawthorn Woods, Long Grove and Kildeer.

“We are so proud of the work that Tony does within our schools and throughout the community,” Smith said.

“There is no way to measure the number of fires and injuries Tony has prevented through his tireless community risk reduction efforts,” he added.