Fuqua named Botetourt Co. interim fire and EMS chief

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FINCASTLE (WSLS 10) - Botetourt County has named Tommy Fuqua as its interim chief of fire and EMS.

Fuqua has served for 30 years with Roanoke County's Department of Fire & Rescue, serving as chief for 15 years. He also served in a leadership capacity with Botetourt County in 2013 and 2014, after retiring from Roanoke County.

After former Chief Jeff Beckner passed, the county wanted to continue a high level of service to the department, while also giving the first-responders time to mourn and heal.

"No one is ever going to be able to replace Chief Jeff Beckner; however, we also have to be prepared to answer the calls of our community and do what Chief would have wanted us to do," said County Administrator Gary Larrowe. "By bringing Tommy back on board, we have a familiar face who can provide stability during this time of transition to fire and rescue's next chapter."

When Botetourt's Director of Emergency Services resigned, Fuqua was brought on to serve as a senior advisor to the department.

During that time, he provided leadership to the combined fire and rescue system while preparing the department for the hiring of its first chief.

"Jeff did many great things in Botetourt, and I am happy to honor his legacy by serving in this position," said Fuqua. "The system in Botetourt is strong; I intend to maintain that strength."

The county administration said it will begin the process of hiring a new chief in the near future, and no timeline is currently in place to fill the position.