Monday, February 26, 2024

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Long-time Mebane fire chief honored during council meeting as he retires

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Mebane’s long-time fire chief, who began his career with the department 30 years ago, was honored during Mebane’s city council meeting Monday night as he prepares to retire at the end of the month.

Robert “Bob” J. Louis announced his planned retirement in April, and December’s council meeting was an opportunity to laud Louis for his years of service to the city prior to his official retirement at the end of the month.

Mayor Ed Hooks read a proclamation honoring Louis; mayor pro tem Tim Bradley, who also doubles as an assistant fire chief, presented Louis with a commemorative brick with the city logo; and state senator Amy Galey capped the presentations by informing Louis that Governor Roy Cooper had awarded him the Order of the Long Leaf Pine, the state’s highest civilian honor.

The Order of the Long Leaf Pine award is awarded to those who have made significant contributions to the state and their communities through their exemplary service and exceptional accomplishments.

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State senator Amy Galey presented retiring Mebane fire chief Bob Louis with the Order of the Long Leaf Pine, the highest civilian honor in North Carolina.

Louis started his career in Mebane as a volunteer in 1993, becoming one of its few paid firemen a year later.

In 1994, Louis was one of three paid firemen and about 30 volunteers with the Mebane Fire Department.

In 2000, he became the city’s first career fire chief. Over the course of his career, the department has expanded to 36 paid firemen with 20 volunteers.

The city has grown from 5,000 to population of about 20,000, and the city has grown from one fire station to three stations.

About two dozen firemen were on hand Monday night as the honors were announced and presented.

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