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Bell sworn in as Zanesville Fire Chief

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Bell sworn in as Zanesville Fire Chief

Jeff Bell is sworn in as Zanesville Fire Chief Friday, Dec. 7.

Jeff Bell is sworn in as Zanesville Fire Chief Friday, Dec. 7.

Jeff Bell is sworn in as Zanesville Fire Chief Friday, Dec. 7.

Jeff Bell is sworn in as Zanesville Fire Chief Friday, Dec. 7.

By Christine Holmes, News Director

The Zanesville Fire Department has officially named Jeff Bell its new chief following the resignation of Eric Waltermire in May.

Bell previously served as Assistant Fire Chief before his appointment and has been on the Zanesville Fire Department since 2002.

In the time between Waltermire’s resignation and Bell’s appointment, Doug Hobson served as Interim Chief.

Bell was selected chief through a civil service selection process, including written and oral examination.

“He’s a very good man. He’s been a good leader on the fire department. I’m looking forward to good things from him,” said Zanesville Public Safety Director Keane Toney during Friday afternoon’s swearing in ceremony at City Hall.

Before joining the fire department, Bell served as a United State Marine, specializing in Aircraft Rescue and Firefighting.

Chief Jeff Bell looks out into the crowd of family, friends and co-workers after being sworn in as Zanesville Fire Chief.

During his time on the Zanesville Fire Department, Bell earned the ranks of lieutenant and assistant fire chief before being named chief on Friday.

Bell could still recall a quote written on the board during his first day of fire training, a message that has stayed with him in his 16 years on the department. The quote read, “You can’t teach what you don’t know, and you can’t lead where you won’t go.”

Addressing the firefighters inside council chambers, Bell said “I think of that when I’m thinking of the task that’s ahead of me, and I think that’s something that’s going to serve me as chief because I have been where you are going. I’ve shared joy with you. I’ve shared in your sorrows. I’ve been that rookie. I’ve been that lieutenant, I’ve been that assistant chief. I’ve been witness to you guys doing amazing feats and performance as just commonplace.”

Bell spoke highly of his fire department and the duty they serve each day.

“When people call 911, it’s because they’re having a bad day,” said Bell. “And if I can tell the City of Zanesville anything from what I have learned from being a firefighter here, when things are at their worst, don’t worry, because we’re going to send you the best.”

A former Buckeye, Bell said he is honored and humbled to follow in the footsteps of those who have come before him.

“I feel like I’m the coach of the Ohio State Buckeyes,” said Bell. “Today, I earned the opportunity to lead an organization with a proud tradition, a rich history and exceptional people, and that’s exciting for me.”

1 Comment

One Response to “Bell sworn in as Zanesville Fire Chief”

  1. SHARON BOLES on December 7th, 2018 3:56 pm

    CONGRATULATIONS, CHIEF BELL.

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