North County Outlook - Community newspaper serving Marysville, Arlington, Tulalip, Smokey Point, Lakewood

Colmore retires after 23 years with Marysville Fire District

 

January 24, 2018 | View PDF

Courtesy Photo

Courtesy Photo Retiring Marysville firefighter/paramedic Russell Colmore, left, receives an American flag from Marysville Fire District Chief Martin McFalls.

After 23 years of service with the Marysville Fire District firefighter/paramedic Russell Colmore will head into retirement.

Colmore served for a total of 33 years in the fire service, volunteering in Santa Barbara and working in Virginia before coming to Marysville.

"Russell was like the family guy here," said Marysville Fire District captain Basil Bailey. "He came in and always took care of the crew."

Bailey described Colmore as a very "calming presence."

"He was always there when you needed someone," said Bailey.

Many in the Marysville Fire District take after Colmore in trying to create a family culture within the district, said Bailey.

"He was a big part of defining the culture of the Marysville Fire District," he said.

What Bailey most remembers about Colmore is that the would always bring in food for his crew.

"Anytime you bring up Russell, it's hard not to mention the food he would always bring into the station," said Bailey. "He loved to cook, and for him it was a way to show how much he cared."

Bailey said the food was always good. "It always left your mouth watering," he said, and his favorite was the meats that Colmore would bring in.

"The ribs were probably my personal favorite," he said.

Before becoming a firefighter Colmore was a teacher for seven years in California.

He holds a bachelor's degree in education, an associate's degree in fire science and earned a paramedic certification from George Washington University.

Beginning in 1996 he was also an instructor at Everett Community College fire science department and eventually became the fire science program director for the college.

"Everett Community College has an amazing fire science program now," said Bailey, who has worked with Colmore at the college.

"He's always had an interest in helping people and growing people," said Bailey.

Bailey said that Colmore was always determined and worked hard for the community.

"If you had a question any time of the day, he was the guy who was always answering the phone," said Bailey.

He also helped the district with many projects in his time.

"When he was given a project he would do it to the best of his ability and it wasn't finished until he thought it was good," said Bailey.

Colmore's most recent project was helping start a community resource paramedic, which was an outreach program meant to help those who have recurring emergency medical needs get access to resources available to them that can help with their chronic conditions.

Bailey said that he will be remembered fondly at the Marysville Fire District.

"He's going to be greatly missed," he said. "Somebody will have some big shoes to fill."

 

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