I feel compelled to respond to a recent article in The Register-Herald regarding the retirement of Brian Simpson from the New Paris-Jefferson Twp. Fire Department. While being an interesting article, it was far from factual. The information concerning length of service, accomplishments for the department during his service and some other stated information was incorrect.
Brian did not retire from the department, I believe he was essentially forced out by untruths and dissatisfaction due to the fact that Brian chose to run an efficient, professional department rather than a “hangout.” Brian also expected the fire house to be kept clean, equipment to be restocked, and a general clean and neat facility. Not everyone was happy with this expectation. Those in charge chose to listen to the dissatisfied few, in my opinion.
The article also spoke of a dinner honoring Brian and the gifts he was given. The dinner was their annual Christmas dinner and Brian was notified by text the day before. No gifts were given, no shadow box, no flag, no helmet shield!
The article also spoke of the improved “response time” of the ambulance. The response time, while very important, is not nearly as important as the “on scene” time. Of course the response time is quick when you are all at the firehouse, however, I personally observed the “on duty” crew eating lunch at O’Charlie’s in Richmond on one occasion and the “on scene” time would have been quite long, especially if the call was on the eastern edge of our territory. Others have spoken about seeing the ambulance outside different restaurants outside the village.
The Ambulance Service and the Fire Service are extremely important to the health and safety of this district and need to be held to high standards of professionalism.
(Editor’s note: The article referred to in the preceding letter was a news release submitted by officials with the New Paris-Jefferson Township Fire Department.)