Two township fire stations named for former chiefs

FLINT TWP. — Soon township fire stations on Reuben Street and Flushing Road will have different names than just fire station No. 1 and No. 2, respectively.

With the blessing of current Fire Chief Tom Stadler and approval by most of the township board, the stations will be officially named in honor of two former fire chiefs.

Station One at 5331 Reuben Street will be named in honor of Jack Maxwell, who served as the township’s first full-time fire chief from 1947 to 1972. Station Two at 3327 Flushing Road will be named in honor of Don Rowley who served as chief from 1982 to 1994.

Maxwell, who died in 2008 at age 96, is being recognized for his enduring legacy that lives on in policies he started that are still standing. He also instilled the importance of public service in his family, including grandson Dan Kildee, Township is a United States Congressman and also a longtime Flint Township resident.

Rowley served the township fire department 33 years, including the final 12 as chief. His legacy includes his son Mark Rowley who served as a fire fighter for 25 years including as assistant fire chief, and his grandson Mark Jr., a recently hired fire fighter.

Though battling health issues, Rowley still serves the township as a member of the Planning Commission for 15 years.

In presenting the proposed station designations to the board, Clerk Kathy Funk said that “this is the perfect opportunity to celebrate the department’s history.”

“One way we can do that is to celebrate two men who had a tremendous impact on the department.”

The naming dedication and presentation of proclamations to the families of Maxwell and Rowley will be scheduled as soon as the lettering can be added to the outside of the designated buildings, Funk said.

Rowley was present in the audience and said a few words including expressing his thanks and reminiscing about his early years in fire service.

Treasurer Lisa Anderson inquired about the cost of lettering for the station names and also asked why her proposal is still tabled to name the tax and water department wing of the township building in honor of Sandra Wright, who served as township treasurer for 20 years, the longest serving treasurer in township history. Wright died last December at age 73.

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