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Swine Time: Climax firefighters are parade grand marshals

Grand marshals for the 34th annual Swine Time Festival parade Saturday, Nov. 29, in Climax will be the members of the Climax Volunteer Fire Department.

Climax Community Club President Darlene Collins and Vice President Phillip Dodson said the department was selected because of the outstanding service they provide to citizens of Climax and surrounding areas.

“The services our volunteer fire department provide for our community and surrounding counties is outstanding,” Collins said. “They do much more than just fire fighting. They are friends who are always there when you need them.”

“The volunteer fire department is a great asset to all the people in our community,” added Dodson.

The department, led by Chief Jeff Kelly, has grown greatly in manpower and equipment through the years.

Prior to 1986, they had just two 1958 model fire trucks.

In 1985, the new station was built at its present location on Lee Street.

Currently, the department has two class A pumpers, a brush truck, a quick response vehicle and a first-response car to respond to medical calls.

Chief Kelly says the department has a group of very loyal and dedicated firefighters.

“We have 17 firemen and four junior firefighters,” the chief said. “Twelve of our firemen have been trained in the medical field.

“In addition to myself, we have an assistant chief, two lieutenants, a training officer, an assistant training officer, a treasurer and a secretary.”

While their No. 1 function is fighting fires, they also respond to vehicle accidents, storms, trees in the road and medical calls.

“We also have to maintain a certain amount of training hours through the year,” Kelly said.