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Charleston, WV 25301

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2008 Sam Channell Award

While the information contained in this news article was current and accurate when we posted it, it may not necessarily represent current WVOEMS policy or procedure. If you have any questions, please contact our office at 304-558-3956.

Posted: Thursday, November 20, 2008 10:42 AM

The Samuel W. Channell Award is presented by the West Virginia EMS Community to individuals who have dedicated themselves and their professional efforts to the betterment of West Virginia's EMS System.  The award is presented to individuals who have demonstrated substantial and measureable lifetime contributions to the EMS system.

Samuel W. Channell, Associate Director of the original West Virginia Office of Emergency Medical Services, was an outstanding individual.  He was an honor graduate of the Washington and Lee College of Commerce and the Wharton School of Finance at the University of Pennsylvania.  He was a husband, father, businessman, EMS Administrator, consultant and a great friend to many.  Sam was instrumental in seeking and in securing federal and state legislation to establish and to develop an emergency medical services system throughout West Virginia and the national.

Sam was instrumental in establishing the American Ambulance Association. Sam, Doctor Fred Cooley and a few others created the Office of Emergency Medical Services in the Governor's Office and they guided it through the chaotic healthcare reorganization of 1977. Sam insisted on developing an EMS system that welded the major EMS components into a solid delivery network.


The 2008 Samuel W. Channell recipient is William Walker, MD, one of West Virginia's EMS pioneers. Doctor Walker has devoted his life, skills and talents to building West Virginia's EMS system.

For over thirty-three years he has served as the Medical Director and Medical Advisor for the Huntington Emergency Ambulance Rescue Team (HEART), Cabell County EMS, Ceredo Volunteer Fire Department, Trans-Med, Inc., Marshall University EMS and the Marshall Medical Technology Program and most importantly the Regional Medical Director for Appalachian EMS, Inc. since 1975.

Doctor Walker, a West Virginia native, graduated from Ripley High School and West Virginia University, where he received his medical degree. Upon completing his Internship in Virginia and his Residency and Fellowship in Ohio he returned to serve his beloved West Virginia.

Doctor Walker has served the Marshall University Medical School as Professor of Surgery and Professor of Family and Community Health and Chief of Emergency Medicine.  His medical service includes the Cabell Huntington Hospital Emergency Department, Director and Staff Physician at St. Mary's Medical Center Emergency, Section Chief and Staff Physician at the Veteran's Affairs Medical Center in Huntington, West Virginia.

Doctor Walker also has served his country as a Medical Officer for the U.S. Army's Calvary Squadron and Airborne Battalion and he has served his state in West Virginia's National Guard Special Forces Group (Airborne).  Doctor Walker has also served as a Cabell Vocational Technical Center Graduation Speaker and as a Basic Life Support Instructor.

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