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Thomasville Fire Chief retires after 39-year career

The City of Thomasville says Fire Chief Chris Bowman has decided to retire. Bowman served as chief for six years, and the city says he made a lasting impact during that time.
The City of Thomasville says Fire Chief Chris Bowman has decided to retire. Bowman served as chief for six years, and the city says he made a lasting impact during that time.(WCTV)
Published: Nov. 14, 2019 at 6:01 PM EST
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By: Noelani Mathews | WCTV Eyewitness News

November 14, 2019

THOMASVILLE, Ga. (WCTV) — The City of Thomasville says Fire Chief Chris Bowman has decided to retire. Bowman served as chief for six years, and the city says he made a lasting impact during that time.

Bowman's career started in Greensboro, North Carolina back in 1985. He says as a rookie, he fought some big fires.

"There was a lot of fear that night as to whether we would make it through or not," he says.

He says his yearbook from back then invokes many memories that guided him to making big decision later on in his career.

Before making this one, he says he considered multiple factors.

"Have you accomplished what you can accomplish and achieve as chief, and is it time to pass the torch?"

During his time in Thomasville, Bowman helped step up training and certifications. Additionally, he implemented community programs for the fire department.

The result: Reducing city fires by 60%.

Bowman says he's proud of his accomplishments and ready to pass the baton.

"It may not be in the fire service, but it will be doing something, and hopefully it will be something either in the art community or something that deals with what my first desire was in graphic design," he says.

He initially joined the military for design, but unexpectedly, he was assigned to fire and rescue. However, he never gave up art.

He's left several of his designs, along with his mark, on Thomasville.

The city says Bowman's retirement will be effective at the end of the year. An interim chief will be named in the next few days.

Copyright 2019 WCTV. All rights reserved.

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