Firefighters and police take time to build stronger bonds


September 25 – Without a doubt, one of the most interesting events of 2020 has been the ability of the Logansport Fire Department to ratify its first union contract with the town of Logansport.

For the first time since the creation of Logansport Fire Department Local 470 in 1936, the union was able to sign a pact with the city. On Wednesday, September 30, 2020, Mayor Chris Martin signed the agreement with Fire Chief Rick Bair and several firefighters following the weekly board meeting, where the three-member panel unanimously approved the agreement.

The four-year contract covers labor and working conditions.

The two entities worked together, organizing and drafting a deal that suited both the union and the city.

“This is a good faith initiative,” Bair said. “We are the only unionized public entity. I have been with the service for 22 years and we have been fighting for a contract since I have been here.”

Currently, 34 firefighters, including the chief, serve the community.

“When I see what’s going on in this country, I know we need to support our firefighters and our police,” said Chuck Newton, retired employee of Logansport Savings Bank, who now resides in Lafayette.

Offering his support at the September meeting, Newton went on to say that firefighters and law enforcement officers ensure the safety, security and enforcement of the constitutional rights that citizens are guaranteed.

“I support you and what you do,” Newton said.

Logansport city councilor in general, Jonathan Nelms, echoed that sentiment. Before the board of directors and addressing the firefighters in the city council chamber, he said: “I support everything you do”, which drew enthusiastic applause from a nearly packed house.

“We want to be partners with LFD. We want to strengthen this partnership, boost morale and let the firefighters know: we support you,” said the mayor, adding that the city’s firefighters and police “are underpaid according to from the surrounding counties.. This (contract) is one more thing as a board of directors that we can do to support you. “

And in his role as Logansport Police Chief, Travis Yike encourages strong support among his colleagues. In part, this requires recognition of successes.

Over the past year, Yike has presented several awards to his department. But at a meeting in January, Yike said his department chose to single out five agents who outdid themselves last year.

Retail Jason Rozzi, Patroller Joseph Schlosser and Patroller Quinn McGovern received the Officers of the Year Award for their courageous efforts to remove a resident from Cass Plaza Apartments during a fire. According to Yike, the police were among the first responders to the scene and their efforts allowed everyone to reach safety without injury.

Other honorees included Lieutenant Adam Morrow and Patroller Alec Vantuinen. They received the chef’s award.

Morrow, along with patroller Tanner Prentice, received the Hitting It Hard Honor for exceeding expectations. They worked overtime to help stranded people and provide support to residents who needed help.

Yike also awarded Corp. DJ Sommers for his 15 years of service.

Contact Kristi Hileman at [email protected] or 574-732-5150

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