Two members of the Mount Airy Fire Department were promoted Wednesday afternoon during a ceremony at the Municipal Building.
The pinning/swearing-in event also included the addition of two part-time firefighters to the department.
“It’s a real special day for our fire department,” Fire Chief Zane Poindexter said during the 45-minute program attended by about 40 people, including city commissioners and other municipal officials.
In addition to active fire personnel and police department representatives, the gathering drew family members of the four men recognized, along with former fire chiefs Bill Joe Woodruff and Benny Brannock. The city Honor Guard presented the colors to begin Wednesday’s ceremony.
One of the promotions involved that of Jody Seaver, to fire captain. Seaver, who has more than 20 years of fire service experience, joined the city department in 2003. He previously held the rank of fire engineer and formerly was medical coordinator for the department that responds to those types of calls along with fires.
“They are the shift supervisors,” Poindexter explained of the department’s fire captains, who include Danny Vipperman and Trey Leonard in addition to Seaver.
Kenneth Simmons, previously a firefighter, was elevated to the rank of fire engineer. He also has 20-plus years of fire service experience, including working with the Mount Airy Fire Department since 2009 and previously with volunteer organizations. He is the department’s medical coordinator at present.
“The engineer is kind of like a lieutenant — he’s kind of a mid-management, middle-level supervisor,” the chief said.
Meanwhile, Brian Emlinger and Josh Joyce officially were sworn in Wednesday to vacant part-time firefighter positions with the department, after joining it earlier this year.
Emlinger is a member of the Franklin Volunteer Fire Department with more than 10 years of experience in firefighting, while Joyce also serves with the Rural Hall Fire Department.
Poindexter said the four men recognized Wednesday “exemplify the meaning of hard work and determination,” citing the training and service involved with their new responsibilities.
The Mount Airy Fire Department has 40 members, including full- and part-time members. In addition to Poindexter, they are led by Assistant Chief Chris Fallaw.
“We’re a small department, but a big family — and that’s what counts,” Seaver told the gathering after his promotion was announced.
Reach Tom Joyce at 719-1924 or email@example.com.