Long-time Courtenay Fire Chief Lawrence Burns is this year’s Emergency Services Local Hero.
Lawrence served as a Comox Valley firefighter for 46 years, 28 of those in the capacity of Fire Chief. He joined Courtenay Fire Department in 1950 and was appointed chief in 1968 – a position he held until he retired, in 1996.
And although officially retired, Lawrence is still heavily involved with the department.
He continues to serve as fire department pastor for all Comox Valley Fire Departments – a role not often spoken about, but very important in the well being of the fire department culture.
Lawrence also serves the community in other significant and important roles – most notably he is chair of Heritage Advisory Commission.
One anonymous nominee said it best:
“I have never a negative comment about his actions and he undoubtedly set the foundation (for) a solid fire department that has been able to continue to succeed long after he retired. He has always conducted himself with integrity and moral high standards.”
The City has previously recognized Burns for his contributions to the community through its highest honour, the “Freedom of the City” in 1995. He was a ‘Citizen of the Century’ award winner during the 2015 Courtenay centennial.
Now he adds Comox Valley Local Hero to his list of accolades.