Rural Metro Fire Chief Jerry Harnish and Knox County officials including Mayor Glenn Jacobs will be in East Knox County at 10 a.m. today (12/23) to officially open the new fire station at 5651 Strawberry Plains Pike. An open house for the community will continue through 7 p.m.
The fire station is a relocation of the existing Station 27 which was located in the Forks of the River Industrial Park. The new station will have better facilities for the first responders based there. It also will provide faster response time for many areas. The location is near the intersection of John Sevier Highway.
The new station was funded entirely by Rural Metro, a subscription-based service. No tax dollars were involved, said Captain Jeffrey Bagwell. Rural Metro is part of AMR, which provides emergency ambulance service for all of Knox County.
Rural Metro Fire Captain Mike Robinson Jr. and others will meet at 11 a.m. Thursday, Dec. 26, at Fire Station 10, 9746 Parkside Drive, to present proceeds from tee-shirt sales to wives of firefighters suffering from breast cancer.
Bagwell explains: Captain Robinson has sold breast cancer awareness tee shirts to the firefighters of Rural Metro in Knox County for several years. The crews are allowed to wear the shirts in the month of October to bring awareness of the need for a cure for breast cancer.
“He saved the proceeds from the sales, not knowing what to do with them, but wanted the money to make a difference,” Bagwell said. Then Robinson discovered two firefighters – one from Rural Metro and another from the Knoxville Fire Department – whose wives have the disease.
“Oddly enough, Mike knows them both. He wanted to give this money to them to use during this time of need, and he wants the theme to be Firefighters Taking Care of Firefighters.”
Tom King update
Tom King continues to rehabilitate his shoulder following surgery. He hopes to return to KnoxTNToday.com sometime in January to resume his weekly profiles of emergency service providers – Our Town Heroes.