(Posted Aug. 31, 2023)
By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor
South Charleston Police Chief Brian Redish and Madison Township Fire & EMS Chief Chris Clark will lead this year’s Heritage Days Festival parade as representatives of local first responders.
“Our first responders do so much for the village. They are important to our community and keeping us safe,” said Patty Moore, parade coordinator.
Heritage Days, hosted by the South Charleston Heritage Commission, will take place on Sept. 30 in and around the historic train depot and log cabin at 147 W. Mound St. The parade steps off at 10 a.m.
Redish joined the South Charleston Police Department as an officer in 2009. He worked his way up through the ranks, becoming a sergeant and in 2012 taking on the role as chief.
Prior to his time in South Charleston, Redish served in the United States Air Force as a member of the 569th U.S. Forces Police in Germany after which he was stationed at Wright Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton. He completed his criminal justice training at the Sinclair Police Academy, then worked in Miami County, Ohio, for a few years. He has worked in law enforcement in Clark County since 2002.
In his time as police chief in South Charleston, the department has grown to include 12 officers, three of whom are full-time and nine part-time.
Redish said he likes South Charleston’s smalltown, welcoming atmosphere.
“We value the citizens here and appreciate all they do for us as a department, and we hope we are meeting the needs they expect of us,” he said.
Clark has been involved with Madison Township Fire & EMS for 31 years, starting as a cadet at age 16. Like Redish, he worked his way up through the ranks. He became chief 16 years ago.
As for why he has stayed with the department for so long, Clark said, “This is home. I was born and raised here. I couldn’t imagine working or living anywhere else. I couldn’t imagine a life of not giving back to this community. This community made me what I am today.”
The department’s staff currently numbers 21. The fire fighters are all volunteer. The EMS personnel are paid. All of them strive to make sure the village is safe and secure, Clark said.
“You don’t get into public safety to get rich. You do it for the people in town,” he said.
Redish and Clark said they feel honored to be chosen to represent first responders in the upcoming parade.
“It’s nice they are going to recognize us,” Redish said. “The ladies in charge of the parade do a very nice job.”