WASHINGTON (WJLA) - Eleven days ago, D.C. Fire and EMS Lieutenant Chris Turner walked into the chaotic and tragic situation at the Navy Yard.
He was one of the first responders on scene as gunman Aaron Alexis shot and killed 12 people while injuring several others.
“We really feel for the families that experienced tragedy and we share in that experience and within the department it takes a toll on us,” Turner says.
Theresa Shanklin was also called to respond to the shootings.
She was just one of just six paramedics inside building 197. She says the horrific scene she saw stays fresh in her mind.
“The one thing that sticks with me is the casualties to see the bodies and I think about those families you know those individuals that got up that morning and never knew they weren’t going to go home that afternoon,” Shanklin says.
On Friday, paramedic Shanklin and others who were called to the shooting that day, were honored for their hard work.
Each received the medal of excellence given by Chief Kenneth Ellerbe, who says their hard work saved lives.
The chief says some of the first on the scene were recruits within the department who'd only been on the job a matter of weeks.