MAHOMET, Ill. (WCIA) — The Cornbelt Fire Protection District has been around since 1953. They have been a volunteer station since, but that has all changed.
At 7:00 a.m., firefighters came in for their first 12-hour shift.
Lieutenant Ryan Beasley said, “Coming in at 7:00 a.m., it was just a little bit different getting on one of the trucks than the normal ambulance.”
Beasley used to only work with the ambulance team full time. Now he is excited to be able to do his dream job on top of that.
“It feels great. One thing I’ve always wanted to do was be a full-time firefighter,” said Beasley.
He said it was an honor to be on the first full-time engine.
“Regardless [of] what our status [is]– if we’re just volunteers– it’s still a big day to be on that first truck.”
Community members and firefighters were both excited to have and to bring the extra protection that the fire department can now provide.
“It makes me feel safer knowing that they’re here for us and Corn Belt has always been there for us,” said Mahomet Village Administrator Patrick Brown.
There will be three firefighters on shift from 7:00 a.m. until 8:00 p.m. The chief says this will help crews respond faster during an emergency. Brown said he is happy not only for his town but for the surrounding area as well.
“I think it’s great that this is an added benefit to our own fire protection and our taxes aren’t going up,” Brown said.