Date Published : August 1st, 2015 Published By : adminA special gathering took place on Wednesday night last to mark the end of an era for a member of Naas Fire Station. John ‘Cecil’ Doyle retired after service 31 years with Naas Fire Station. John began his careers as a fire-fighter with Kildare Fire Service in July 1984 and retired his career as a Driver/Mechanic.
The Mayor of Kildare, Cllr Brendan Weld, Kildare Chief Fire Officer Celina Barrett and Senior Assistant Chief Fire Officer Niall O’ Riordan joined the Naas fire crew and Johns family and friends to mark his retirement.
(Chief Fire Officer Celina Barrett, Mayor of Kildare Brendan Weld, Driver/Mechanic John T. Doyle and Snr ACFO Niall O' Riordan)
By Declan Keogh
Speaking at the function, the Mayor of Kildare said “Tonight’s ceremony of John’s retirement is in some way tinged with sadness as John leaves behind another family, the family he has worked with over the past 31 years, the family of Naas Fire Station. John has seen a lot of changes over the 31 years, from a new station, new fire appliances, new equipment and new techniques and at all times he has taken this in his stride and has adapted with the changing times and as Mayor of Kildare, I wish to thank you for the service you have provided to Kildare Fire Service, the community t of Naas and the people of Kildare”.
The Mayor presented John with his 30 years Service certificate and medal on behalf of Minister Alan Kelly.
Kildare’s Chief Fire Officer Celina Barrett said she was looking up Johns training record earlier that day and saw that he had attended a special course on Helicopter Fire fighting which was in preparation of the Ryder Cup which was held in the county. The Chief said “If you are to look at someone’s CV and see the level and extent of courses that John has undertaken, it is a fantastic site and a great achievement. When you meet Naas Fire crew on the fire ground, you typically meet John manning the incident command board and John is a friendly face that you expect to see at an incident.” she said. The CFO issued John with a copy of his training record spanning the 31 years.
The Mayor and CFO thanked John’s family for their support over the years in ‘forgiving’ John for turning out to calls at any stage of the day or night, and on important family occasions too. Senor ACFO Niall O’ Riordan presented John's mother Kathleen with a bouquet of flowers.
Photo: (SACFO Niall O'Riordan presents Mrs Doyle with bouquet of flowers)
Sub Officer Derek Collins presented John with a very unique and special gift which he promised to do ten years ago - a fire damaged fire-fighters torch. Derek Collins told the gathered group how it came about. “About 10 years ago we were called out to a Chimney fire in Coill Dubh, Naas. John was tasked with checking the chimney so he opened the inspection hatch and put in his torch to check it. When we got back to the station, John only discovered he lost his torch and the last time he had it was at the chimney fire and he couldn't for the life of him recount where it might be. We were called back out to Coill Dubh about three weeks later to another chimney fire at a house 3 doors down and it was bugging me what happened the torch and I had an idea where it might be so after dealing with that fire I took a walk up to the previous house. I asked the owner could I re-check the chimney, and they were like, eh…Okay! So I opened the inspection hatch and had a root around and as I was searching around felt this thing in the hatch, and there low and behold was this burned, black fireman’s torch and here is the remains of that torch”.
Photo: (Sub. Station Officer Derek Collins presented John with his torch on a plaque on behalf of the fire crew in Naas)
John recalled some stories from over the years. “I remember when I started we were in the old fire station and after coming back from a call, the appliances had to be revered in, we had no back door or way around, and the two appliances were parked one in front of the other and one time after arriving at the station for a call, the engine in front happened to break down, so we had to push it out of the way to get to the second one and I taught to myself, what am after getting myself into at all, but thankfully that rarely happened”.
John thanked all his family for putting up with him over the years, from waking them up in the middle of the night with the noisy alerter to running out the door leaving a hot dinner on the table, and sometimes on Christmas day. He will spend his time out of the fire service with his family, sharing special times with his children and is looking forward to his retirement days.
Photo: (Retired Naas Station Officer Anthony Doyle and retiring D/M John T. Doyle)
Photo Naas Fire Crew - (L-R: D/M Derek Ryan, F/F Ger Kelly, F/F Emmet Loughlin, F/F John J Shaughnessy, F/F Keith Harrison, Senior D/M John T "Cecil" Doyle, S/O Eddie Troy, F/F Tommy Loughran, SSO Paul O' Dwyer, F/F Brian King, F/F Beau Domican, D/M Richard Kelly, SSO Derek Collins
Photos by Declan Keogh