Deputy Fire Chief Retires after 42 years of service

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KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – In four decades of service, technology and the way firefighters respond to emergencies has evolved.

In the same time, some firefighters have grown and evolved with the changes, leading the way for the next generation of first responders.

“It’s like everything else in the world, technology is outstanding,” said Gene Blaylock, Deputy Chief for the Rural Metro Fire Department.

Blaylock joined Rural Metro in the first class, 1977. At the time, he says, the technology used in the decades that followed was “hard to imagine.”

“We couldn’t even dream of it in 1977,” said Blaylock.

Now, retiring, Blaylock has held multiple ranks for Rural Metro and says the thing he’ll miss most are the people.

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