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  • Tribute to Chief Richard H. Gobble, II

    by Representative Shelley Moore Capito

    Posted on 2013-01-14

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    CAPITO of west virginia in the house of representatives Monday, January 14, 2013 Mrs. CAPITO. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to recognize the bravery of City of Ripley Fire Chief Richard H. Gobble, II. Chief Gobble, a lifelong resident of the community he serves, heads an all volunteer fire department in Ripley, WV, a small town in my district.

    On the morning of December 29, 2012, Ripley's Mayor received an anonymous letter detailing a heroic event that happened the week earlier, just before the Christmas holiday. The letter's anonymous author had been traveling down Route 33 when he witnessed a frightening car wreck, in which the vehicle left the road and landed in the frigid waters of a nearby creek.

    The first emergency responder on the scene was a man from the fire department, who, according to the anonymous author, waded into the cold waters without hesitation to help the trapped motorist. The fireman successfully retrieved the elderly man from his almost completely submerged car and helped him to shore, reassuring him along the way that everything would be alright. By the time the fireman helped the elderly man to the creek bank, other members of the fire department, paramedics, and police had arrived on the scene to assist.

    Once the elderly man was safe from the frigid waters and receiving medical treatment from paramedics, the letter's anonymous author asked a member of the fire department for the name of the fireman that risked hypothermia to save the motorist. The fireman responded, ``That's our chief!'' It was Ripley's volunteer fire chief, Richard Gobble, who had rescued the man from the frozen creek and saved his life.

    Mr. Speaker, the level of devotion to community by Chief Gobble is one deserving of great respect and recognition.

    I wish to thank Chief Gobble for his service to his community. The City of Ripley is fortunate to have such a heroic man leading their fire department.


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