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New Hires for Hickory Fire Department

HICKORY, NC (February 25, 2019) — The following persons have been hired as firefighters for the Hickory Fire Department.

Photo (left to right): Valladolid, Townsend, Knight, Estes, Bondurant, and Benfield

Kyle Benfield
Kyle Benfield has been hired as a firefighter with the Hickory Fire Department. Prior to employment with the Hickory Fire Department, Benfield served as a firefighter with St Stephen’s and George Hildebrand fire departments. He also was a member of the United States Marine Corps. Benfield is certified as a level II firefighter and Hazardous Materials Operations level thorough the North Carolina Fire & Rescue Commission and in Technical Rescue. He is also certified as an EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) through the North Carolina Office of the Emergency Services. In 2017, he graduated from the Western Piedmont Community College’s Fire Academy class. He is married to Savannah and they have one child Jaxson.

Michael Bondurant
The Hickory Fire Department recently hired Michael Bondurant as a firefighter. Prior to employment with the Hickory Fire Department, Bondurant served as a firefighter and engineer with Valdese Fire Department for the past five years and works part time at Mountain View Fire Department. He is certified as an EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) through the North Carolina Office of Emergency Services and a Level II firefighter through the North Carolina Fire and Rescue Commission. He has completed training in many areas including Hazardous Materials certification awareness and operations levels, Driver Operator pumps and aerials, and is certified in Technical Rescue. He has also completed training as a Child Passenger Safety Technician. He is married to Kendra and they have two daughters, Molly and Michaela.

Samuel Estes
The Hickory Fire Department recently hired Samuel Estes as a firefighter. For ten years, Estes served as a firefighter/EMT with West Iredell Fire Department. Estes is certified as a Level 2 Firefighter and Hazardous Materials Awareness through the North Carolina Fire & Rescue Commission. Since 2011, Estes has been certified as an Emergency Medical Technician through NC Office of Emergency Medical Services. He has two children Braydin, age 5 and Jaxson, age 2.

Coy Knight
Coy Knight has been hired as a firefighter with the Hickory Fire Department. Before employment with the Hickory Fire Department, Knight was a firefighter with Long View Fire Department for ten years. He has completed training as a Level II firefighter through the North Carolina Fire and Rescue Commission and has completed training in many areas including Hazardous Materials certification Awareness and Operations levels, and Technical Rescue. He is certified as an EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) through the North Carolina Office of Emergency Services. He is married to Ana and they have two sons, Bentley and Halligan.

Everette MacKenzie Townsend
MacKenzie Townsend has been hired as a firefighter with the Hickory Fire Department. For three years, he has been a firefighter with Wittenburg Volunteer Fire Department. Through the North Carolina Fire and Rescue Commission, he has completed training as a Level 2 Firefighter, Hazardous Materials certification Awareness and Operations levels, Fire & Life Safety Educator level 1, and Technical Rescue. He has completed training in many areas including Driver Operator pumps and aerials, Technical Rescue in Ropes, Water, Trench and Vehicle Machinery Rescue. He is certified as an EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) through the North Carolina Office of Emergency Services. Townsend has been certified as a level I Fire Service Instructor and has completed the level I Fire Officer program. He is the third generation firefighter with the City of Hickory.

Luis Valladolid
The Hickory Fire Department recently hired Luis Valladolid as a firefighter. Valladolid’s fire service career started in 2008 in the United States Marine Corps as an aircraft firefighter and rescue specialist. He was deployed in support of OEF (Operation Enduring Freedom) in 2009 to 2010. After an honorable discharge in 2012, he began working for the City of Conover as a firefighter/EMT. During 2012-2013, he conducted an internship at Mooresville Fire & Rescue, which consisted of install smoke alarms during canvassing events. Valladolid also served as a volunteer firefighter with St Stephen’s Fire Department and works part time for Catawba County EMS. In 2017, he accepted a contract for Antarctic Fire department and after fulfilling that commitment, he applied for Hickory Fire Department. He is certified as an EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) through the North Carolina Office of Emergency Services and a Level II firefighter through the North Carolina Fire and Rescue Commission. He has completed training in many areas including Hazardous Materials certification awareness and operations levels, and Aircraft Rescue Firefighter. He is a 2009 graduate of the Department of Defense Fire Academy. He is married to Kimberly Ellis.