Cherokee County Fire and Emergency Services hosted a dinner last night at the Union Hill Community Center to honor Captain Freddie Townsend, who is retiring from the fire department after thirty years of service.
After dinner and a slide-show presentation, Cherokee County Fire Chief, Tim Prather, came forward to thank Townsend for his commitment and service to the citizens of Cherokee County. According to Chief Prather, “Townsend came to work on September 25, 1998 and was hired to work at the Little River Fire Department by then Fire Chief Bobby White. Townsend was promoted to Sergeant in 1996 and was promoted to Lieutenant the following year. In January of 2002, he was promoted to the rank of Captain. During his 30 years of work with the department, Townsend received six documented letters of recognition from citizens.”
Townsend was also one of the remaining members of the Oak Grove and Little River Fire Departments that are still employed today. They are the last of the original career firefighters before the fire department went county wide. The remaining Oak Grove members are Battalion Chief Danny West, Division Chief Dan Floyd, Battalion Chief Johnny Wilkins and Fire Chief, Tim Prather. Remaining members of Little River are Battalion Chief Kerry Hughes, Battalion Chief Fred Dobson and Captain Fred Townsend.
Chief Prather then presented Townsend with his “bugle” award. The bugle or speaking trumpet is a reference to a megaphone like device that was used in the early days of the fire service. Townsend came to the podium and shared some of his experiences in the fire department and thanked everyone for coming to the event.
After the “bugle” presentation, chiefs, battalion chiefs, firefighters and friends came forward to roast Townsend with funny stories about his career with the fire department. Some of the speakers included Cherokee County Fire Chief, Tim Prather, Assistant Fire Chief, Eddie Robinson, Battalion Chief Brian Ward, Battalion Chief Ricky Collett, Fire Inspector Mike Priest, Scott Townsend who is the EMS Quality Assurance Coordinator for Cherokee County Fire and he is also Freddie’s brother and firefighter, Jeff Phillips.
Townsend officially retired from the fire department last Saturday. We congratulate Freddie Townsend on his retirement and we thank him for thirty years of service to Cherokee County and its citizens.