Monette/Black Oak firemen recognized
The Monette and Black Oak Fire Departments held their annual family dinner and recognition dinner on Jan. 16 at the Monette Fire Station.
"We try to take time out each year to show our appreciation for the firemen and their families," said Fire Chief Bob Blankenship. "We started off last year with the big ice storm and continued to stay busy the rest of the year. Our firemen were on the job immediately when a crisis situation arose. They checked on the elderly in our community and met needs in all types of emergency situations.
"We are most fortunate to have city mayors and councils to work with us, in meeting the needs of our residents. We make a good team."
Chief Blankenship presented three retiring firemen with plaques denoting their years of service. Wilbourn Kirby retired with 18 years, Kenny Vaughn had 30 years and Aaron Uthoff also had 30 years of service.
The fire department has made improvements and purchases this past year to upgrade equipment and supplies. A new cascade unit was purchased for the Monette station at a cost of $15,000. The used cascade unit will be used at the Black Oak station to meet the needs there.
Chief Blankenship presented Monette Mayor Chub Qualls with a copy of "The History of the Monette Fire Department" for placement in the Buffalo Island Museum. Both Mayor Qualls and Black Oak Mayor Norman Williams expressed their appreciation for the service received from the fire departments.
"We look each year for ways to improve our services to the community," Blankenship said. "We hope to have another successful year this year and to add or improve services."