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PROVO POLICE, FIREFIGHTERS GET PAT ON THE BACK AT LUNCH

Earlier this month, part-time Provo police officer Clarence Phillips stopped to help a Korean man unfamiliar with the city locate his son's residence.

A couple of weeks later, the man showed up in Chief Swen Nielsen's office with an engraved plaque of appreciation for Phillips."This is really out of the ordinary," Phillips said after accepting the award Wednesday.

Because service rendered by Provo police officers and firefighters often goes overlooked by the public, Zions First National Bank co-sponsored Public Safety Appreciation Day on Wednesday. A luncheon allowed police and fire chiefs to brag about their departments.

"We recognize that people don't think much about us unless they need us," said Mike Bledsoe, assistant fire chief. "When they need us, we will be there."

Firefighters, he said, are asked to perform "superhuman" acts in difficult situations.

Nielsen praised his officers for their work from solving murders to giving directions as Phillips did. Because the department is small, he said, officers are called upon to perform a variety of duties including aquatic and mountain rescues and training new officers.