Retiring Ontario Fire Marshal thanks first responders
By Grant Cameron
On Feb. 18, his final day as Fire Marshal of Ontario, Ross Nichols thanked first responders for making Ontario a safer place to live.
He posted a public letter and statement on Twitter to the women and men on the front line, thanking them for their service.
“On this, my final day as Fire Marshal of Ontario, I’m sending out a thank you to all those in the first responder community who have chosen to serve,” he wrote. “To our police officers, firefighters, paramedics, call-takers and dispatchers … thank you for all you do. Be well, and play safe.”
In the letter, he said that each and every day first responders roll out into the unknown, putting themselves in harm’s way in service to the public.
“Whether it’s the middle of the night or in broad daylight, ridiculously hot or unbelievably cold, downtown in a major city or hours from the nearest community, paid or volunteering, you’re there for people on their most difficult days – helping them when they need it most.”
In these increasingly challenging times, he said, the role of first responder demands a great deal from those willing to put it all on the line to help their fellow citizens.
“You see and do the things most people don’t want (to) see and do … or simply aren’t able to do,” he wrote. “As a result, it’s vital that we support each other – not just physically, but mentally as well.
“Please look after each other both on and off the street,” he wrote.
Many from the first responder community responded to Ross’s tweet, congratulating him on his retirement and for his service.
Toronto Fire Services Fire Chief Matthew Pegg wrote, “Thank you Ross! I wish you all the best in your next adventure and thank you for your public service.”
Grand Falls-Windsor, N.L., Fire Chief Vince MacKenzie said, “Congratulations Ross and thank you for your leadership and service to Ontario and across Canada. It was a pleasure to meet and work with you. Best wishes from Newfoundland and Labrador Fire Service.”
The Ontario Provincial Police wrote, “Happy retirement! All the very best,” and the Police Association of Ontario wrote, “Thank you for your service! On behalf of the @PoliceAssocON’s 18,000 front-line police personnel members across the province, all the best in your future endeavours.”
Jon Pegg, chief of emergency management for the province, has been named as the new fire marshal.
Click here to see Ross’s tweet.