Wyatt RMADISONVILLE, Ky. (12/17/18) — Madisonville Fire Department Chief Ray Wyatt will retire Dec. 31 after serving the community for nearly three decades.

He served as a city firefighter for eight years, and then was promoted to engineer for eight years. Afterward, he moved to captain, major, shift commander, assistant chief to chief.

“Looking back, working shoulder-to-shoulder with the guys — those are the times I really miss,” the chief said, following a Madisonville City Council meeting held tonight at City Hall. “The administrative role, it’s important, and they definitely need good leaders in there. I don’t mind to tell you that it is a stressful job. Over the duration of six years in leadership, I’m responsible for everything they do — good or bad — interactions and to ensure each firefighter goes home at night.”

He hasn’t had time to reflect on all the memories, but what quickly entered his mind was the 2009 ice storm.

“I was working the night that all came down,” he recalled. “It was a long two weeks responding to emergencies and fires. A lot of places in town have generators because of that storm. This community is so much better prepared today, compared to what it was then. We’ve really come a long way.”

He has no immediate plans, but the proud grandpa of six said he is ready to chill out spending time with family.

The new mayor will select a chief to fill Wyatt’s shoes next year.

SurfKY News

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