Bolivar community honors longtime volunteer firefighter

BOLIVAR, Tenn. — A West Tennessee community came together Friday to celebrate a longtime volunteer firefighter on his birthday.

Emmett Bolyard volunteered as a firefighter for his hometown fire department. Family, friends and co-workers gathered Friday to celebrate his more than fifty years of service.

“I knew something was up, but I wasn’t expecting this,” Bolyard said.

Emmett also celebrated his 80th birthday.

“It means a lot to me that people think that much of me, but I’ve been around here for a very long time,” Bolyard said.

The volunteer firefighter has enjoyed a long and rewarding career.

“I was promoted to captain, I don’t remember what year it was, and so years later I was promoted to assistant chief,” Bolyard said.

The Bolivar Fire Department is dedicating their sleeping quarters to Bolyard after his 55 years of hard work and dedication.

“He hardly ever misses a fire, and if he misses a fire, he’s not in town,” said his son, B.J. Bolyard, a volunteer firefighter for the Bolivar Fire Department.

He says his father is an inspiration to him and he feels his father is getting well-deserved recognition.

“It’s just an honor to be with all these people and just to see the look on my dad’s face as he’s getting the recognition that he truly does deserve and the love he deserves,” B.J. Bolyard said.

Emmett says he became a part of the Bolivar Fire Department in 1964.

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