The meeting at the Henderson Center Gym in Summit Park brought plenty of people out, most of whom were there to support their hometown volunteer fire department. Diane Arnett was one resident who spoke out. She acknowledged that while she hasn't been as supportive in the past, she's willing to do whatever it takes to keep the department alive.
"I think the community needs to come out and support them. We don't want the fire department to shut down by no means. We want them to stay in the community, but we can't have them stay in the community without their support. I'm willing to step up and I'm hoping other residents want to step up as well," said Arnett.
Part of that survival plan will be a reorganization of the department, which started earlier than expected with the resignation Saturday of Chief Brenda Fragmin. Greg Cutright was named to replace her, and he's already looking for ways to fix the ailing organization.
"First thing I want to achieve is get our charter back, make sure that our 501(c) is all taken care of, and then get with the community and make a better plan to achieve what we needs to," said Cutright.
Many residents expressed interest in helping the department, maybe not in fighting fires, but in helping it get back on its feet. Both Arnett and Cutright said there's plenty of work left to be done, but they're glad to have a better understanding between the community and the fire department.
"It means a lot that you know that the community's there to help you when you're in need. We try to help out when they are, so I'm glad to see that they're here for us," Cutright said.
"We just need to jump in there and reorganize and get this thing back on the ball so the community will be proud of this fire department again like it was in the past," Arnett said.