By Jody Stewart
The LaFayette Fire Department held a traditional push ceremony on Saturday the 22nd upon receiving their new much anticipated fire engine. Chief Dooty gave a warm welcome to the crowd that gathered to celebrate with the department.
Chief Dooty said, “Thank you all for coming out today and spending your weekend time with us. What we are going to do today is a push ceremony which dates back to the 1800’s. Back then fire departments worked with horse drawn carriages. When they were done with a fire they would go back to the station and as most of you know horses do not back up very well. So, what the firemen would have to do is disconnect the fire carts from the horses and manually push them back into the station.”
LaFayette Police Chief Rampey was in attendance and blessed a catered lunch that was served and prepared by Krave Korner. While the crowd ate Chief Dooty gave Mayor Vines, and several city councilpeople a walk around tour of the new engine explaining what was behind the several doors on the truck.
Mayor Vines spoke and thanked everyone for attending. “Public safety is so important and close to my heart. When something happens first thing people do is call the police or the fire department. When I first came on board, I asked Chief Dooty what he needed and he said Mayor I need a new fire truck. We have a team in LaFayette. Me, chiefs, city council may not always agree but in the end, we get it done. It takes a team.”
The Mayor went on to tell a story, “My mother called me the other night and all I could hear was an ambulance. I jumped up and I said mom what is wrong? She said my friend a couple of houses down… there is an ambulance there. Mom said she was going down there. I said ok mom keep me informed. Mom’s friend had life alert and had pushed the button and the ambulance had come. Mom said the EMTs were knocking on the door, but they could not get in. Mom said one of the EMT’s walked around and took a screen off a window and managed to get the window up. She said the EMT came from a distance and jumped right through the open window.”
As the crowd was laughing Mayor Vines explained that his mom was way more excited about the man running and jumping through an open window than her friend being taken to the hospital.
Vines added, “I told this story just to say that these guys will go above the call of duty to get the job done.”
Police Chief Rampey then blessed the truck “Lord we ask blessing over this truck both coming and going and Lord please keep all of those who operate it safe.”
The crowd then moved outside where approximately 11 fireman including Chief Dooty pushed fire engine Number 1 into the open bay as their families, city council and local residents watched.