Excerpts from the sj-r.com:

Springfield Fire Chief Barry Helmerichs will retire at the end of the month after almost three years as chief.  Of the five division chiefs, Bob Marfell, division chief of training, retired Monday and Mark Hart, division chief of operations, will retire March 16. Along with the division chiefs, Battalion Chief Edward Gillespie retired last week, and Battalion Chief Bill Carmean will retire Friday. The three other division chiefs, Chris Richmond, Jeph Bassett and Lyndal Neighbours will not retire this year.

When Helmerichs was appointed chief in 2015, he said he would regain the city’s Class 1 rating. At the time, the city had a Class 3 ISO rating. In 2017, Springfield achieved a Class 2 rating, and in January, it a Class 1 rating, without a significant change in funds.

He is equally proud of the push for advanced medical training for firefighters. Last year, the department increased the number of people who recovered from heart attacks by 600 percent. Additionally, the department’s turnout time has dropped by 16 percent over the last two years.

Helmerichs was born and raised in Springfield, and has been with the fire department for 26 years.