Lowndesboro honors volunteer firefighters

Published 10:46 am Friday, June 22, 2012

Lowndesboro Volunteer Firemen were recognized by the Lowndesboro Town Council Saturday with a meal and day in their honor at Marengo House, as well as proclamations. Pictured (not in order) are Bill Petrey, assistant chief of the paramedic division of the Montgomery Fire Department, who trained the men and volunteers, Robert Hagood, Gary Bull, Don Smith, Don Coker, Dustin Callis, Council member David Spooner, Joe Ward, Steve Johnson, Bubba McPherson and Council member Dennis Blair. Not pictured are volunteers Kirk Meadows, Chief Keith Hudson and John Blue Meadows.

By Fred Guarino
The Lowndes Signal

The Lowndesboro Town Council recognized its certified volunteer firefighters with Lowndesboro Volunteer Fire Department Appreciation Day at Marengo House Saturday.

The council hosted the volunteers to a meal and presented proclamations to Bill Petrey, assistant chief of the paramedic division of the Montgomery Fire Department, who led the fire training, and to each Lowndesboro volunteer fireman who completed 160 hours of training.

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Also on hand was Lowndes County Commission Chairman Robert Harris.

“It’s impressive that y’all were able to do this,” said Mayor Rick Pate. He said he was representing the Lowndesboro community in honoring the firemen as well as the whole Lowndesboro area “which is gong to benefit from what y’all have done.”

According to the proclamation for volunteers, which named June 16, 2012 as Lowndesboro Volunteer Fire Department Day, the department increased its number of certified volunteer firefighters from four to 13, obtained grants to purchase new and modern equipment and looks to extend its coverage area in the future to Lowndes County homes along the Alabama River.

Volunteer Fire Department officers include Council member Dennis Blair, president, Fire Chief Keith Hudson, vice-president, Council member David Spooner, secretary, Kirk Meadows, treasurer, Steve Johnson and Gary Bull board members.

“Anybody’s whose gone through 160 hours of training is a real fireman in my eyes,” Pate said.

Blair and Spooner recognized Petrey. “Most of the time, this type of training is rarely done within your community,” Blair said, “because it ‘s kind of expensive. But Chief Petrey came here on his own dime and would not let us pay him… He was just trilled to come down here and help us. And that’s a good guy, wanting to do good.”

Blair said he did not think the training could have happened without Petrey’s help.

“Some of us thought how hard can this be,” Spooner said. “But we had a real awakening when Petrey started talking about specific gravity, friction loss due to load size, water pressure ratios and reduction of back draft potential.”

He presented Petrey as an honorary member of the Lowndesboro Volunteer Fire Department and said he expected Petrey to show up July 2 at their first training exercise.

Pate said the day was not only held to recognize the volunteers but their wives and children who also wake up when the calls come in to respond to a fire.

Other members of the volunteer fire department recognized include Robert Hagood, John Blue Meadows, Don Smith, Don Coker, Dustin Callis, Joe Ward and Bubba McPherson.