Fire Warden Bill Law recognized before legislators for 60 years of service
CHEYENNE – Goshen County Fire Warden Bill Law was recently recognized before the Wyoming Legislature for his more than 60 years of service.
Law began his firefighting career with the Yoder Volunteer Fire Department (YVFD) before moving to the Torrington Volunteer Fire Department (TVFD); however, it didn’t take long before former county commissioners appointed Law as the county fire warden.
For more than 60 years, Law has responded to a number of fire and emergency incidents within the county and helped surrounding counties and states with emergency fire services.
Members of the Wyoming House of Representatives and Senate honored Law in a special recognition at the state capitol in Cheyenne last week in honor of his 60 years of service.
Wyoming Senator Fred Baldwin, R-Afton, introduced Law to legislators and gallery guests as he also directed everyone’s attention to members of YVFD sitting in the gallery to thank the Yoder department for its continued service to not only Goshen County, but also to other Wyoming fire departments and other fire departments outside of the state.
“It’s my pleasure to introduce Mr. Bill Law who somehow managed 60 years on the fire department,” Baldwin said.
Baldwin, who also serves as a fire personnel in the South Lincoln Fire District, told other legislators how firefighters often leave behind their food on tables, full shopping carts, friends, family and other things they love to keep their communities safe and how it was a testament of Law’s career to do so for more than 60 years and remain happily married.
“Like leaving a warm bed behind and having to go out in the cold night to fight a fire,” Baldwin further added. “I guarantee that in 60 years Bill (Law) has left behind a lot of things in service to his community, county and the state.”
Baldwin said Law’s career is filled with years of tremendous work, commitment and heart to that of his own community, county, Wyoming and other states nearby.
During his short two minute speech after standing before a thunderous Legislative and guest gallery, of which members of YVFD were present, Law said, “What a humbling experience to be here before the Representatives and Senators of the state of Wyoming.”
“We talk about my service – I applaud you for your service to the residents and citizens of Wyoming and our nation,” Law told legislators. “So, thank you.”
Adding as he pointed to members of the YVFD in the upper deck of the gallery, “And for my comrades above above – thank you for caring enough to come.”
“This 60 years – it does go fast,” Law explained. “I look at when I first put the uniform on; the first 40 (years) seemed to drag – I got to tell you, the last 20 (years) go in a hurry.”
However, Law said fire fighting isn’t something he does alone and if it were not for the members of the various Goshen County fire districts, he doesn’t think he would have served for more than 60 years.
“You know – we do not do this on our own,” Law further explained. “It is a pleasure to work with all of those who were there before me, who helped set the path for me to follow and help me along the line.”
Adding, “We continue to be part of the service to Wyoming and it’s always an honor to be included as a firefighter.”
Law asked legislators to “think about this – what child doesn’t want to ride on a firetruck?”
“I’ve been doing it for 60 years,” Law chuckled along with legislators and guests. “It just doesn’t get a lot better than that.”
Law thanked lawmakers, his firefighter friends and guests in the gallery and said, “It’s my pleasure (to serve) and I offer right back to you, my congratulations to my senator (Sen. Cheri Steinmetz, R-Torrington) and thank you for your support.”
Law also thanked, “You gentlemen and ladies,” of the various fire districts who were in the gallery for support, especially his hometown and first department he worked for, YVFD.
Law exited with a standing ovation to earmark his more than 60 years of service in Wyoming as a firefighter.
After the applause ended, Baldwin said, “We love our firefighters and first responders – and what an honor it is to have someone like Bill (Law) to serve our state.”
Recently, Law teased retirement with Goshen County Commissioners during his monthly fire warden report in January, but wasn’t sure when retirement would come.