Stewart Named Interim Fire Chief
The year was 1982. A gallon of gas cost $1.30. Ronald Reagan was president. And Maxie Stewart Jr. became a Jackson fire fighter. Monday, he stepped into the biggest job of all at the department. He walked into the fire department as a battalion chief but walked out as interim chief of the entire Jackson Fire Department. Stewart met with Mayor Jerry Gist and was told he had been promoted. “He expects me to keep the department running as is because we have a great fire department from administration to operations,” said Stewart. “We have great fire fighters who want to serve the citizens. In his 29 years with JFD, Stewart has served as a fire fighter, driver, captain, battalion chief and now interim chief. He says his experience makes it easy to relate to the men and women he works with. “If a fire fighter is having problems, I will tell them just stay with it, things will come and you have to learn,” said Stewart. Stewart does not know when or if the mayor will change his title from interim to just fire chief. But that does not worry him. For now, the 57-year-old says he will continue doing what he loves, working for the Jackson Fire Department. “This is a job where every day is different and that is what is great about it,” said Stewart.