Assistant Fire Chief retires after 35 years of volunteering

| December 31, 2014
Assistant Fire Chief of the Three Rivers District Fire Department Tim Arnold, retired from his position after 35 years of volunteering as a firefighter. Lynn Powelson, left, fire chief, presented Arnold, right, with a plaque for his years of service at a weekly firefighter training session on Tuesday, Dec. 30.

Assistant Fire Chief of the Three Rivers District Fire Department Tim Arnold, retired from his position after 35 years of volunteering as a firefighter. Lynn Powelson, left, fire chief, presented Arnold, right, with a plaque for his years of service at a weekly firefighter training session on Tuesday, Dec. 30.

COSHOCTON – On average, a volunteer firefighter will dedicate approximately five years of his or her life to the department before the strains of the job get to be too much. But Assistant Fire Chief Tim Arnold has far surpassed those years and is now retiring with 35 years of volunteer work at the Three Rivers District Fire Department under his belt.

“I’m going to miss the people,” said Arnold. “We probably describe ourselves as a dysfunctional family, but when the call comes in for help, we put all of our differences aside when we go out that door. These are the guys you would want to help you. Our goal is to get out there and help and make sure everyone makes it back safe.”

Arnold began volunteering in May 1979 when firefighters were equipped with a long rubber coat, knee-high boots, and a mask. Since then, he has seen many changes in the fire department including new trucks, a new station, and the district forming from the Tuscarawas Township Fire Department to Three Rivers District Fire Department.

Arnold knew he wanted to be a firefighter since he was a little boy.

“It’s the same as every kid growing up,” he said. “You either wanted to be a police officer, an astronaut, or a firefighter.”

Arnold has enjoyed working at the fire department, especially on the rare occasions when people come into the office after a car accident or fire to personally thank the firefighters for their hard work and sacrifice.

“We go out, do what we need to do, and make sure everyone stays safe,” said Arnold. “A lot of people are under the misconception that we’re here 24 hours a day, seven days a week. We’re not. We’re all volunteer. We’re not here for the pay. We make a lot of family sacrifices. I can’t thank the guys enough for their sacrifices. This group here is an exceptional group. I couldn’t ask for a better group. They deserve all the praise they can get.”

Arnold plans on spending more time with his family, especially his two grandsons.

“It’s been great working with Tim,” said Fire Chief Lynn Powelson. “Three Rivers Fire Department is definitely going to miss him. But I understand that he’s putting his priorities in line spending time with his family.”

[email protected]

Tags: ,

Category: People & Places

About the Author ()

I have been employed at the Coshocton County Beacon since September 2009 as a news reporter and assistant graphic artist. I am a 2004 graduate of Newcomerstown High School and a 2008 graduate of Capital University with a bachelor’s degree in Professional Writing. I am married to John Scott and live in Newcomerstown. We have two beautiful daughters, Amelia Grace Scott and Leanna Rose Scott.

Comments are closed.