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Longtime assistant named Ellis fire chief

9/20/2012

By RANDY GONZALES

By RANDY GONZALES

rgonzales@dailynews.net

ELLIS -- It seemed like the thing to do.

Mayor David McDaniel appointed longtime assistant fire chief Denis Vine the new fire chief at Monday night's city council meeting, and council members unanimously approved the appointment.

Vine, 60, replaces Les Weber, who retired last month. He was Weber's assistant chief for 23 years and has been with the Ellis volunteer fire department for 39 years.

"It just pretty much followed that he should be the next person in line for that position, and he wanted it," McDaniel said.

"I'm happy to serve the community, serving like I had been doing the last 39 years," said Vine, who has been interim chief since Weber's retirement.

"He's been in charge now for maybe 30 days," McDaniel said. "He's been doing a fine job at that position."

Ellis has 20 volunteer firefighters in the department.

"My goal is to take the fire department, and train them like we have been training them," Vine said. "Try to bring this Ellis city fire department up to be one of the best volunteer fire departments you could possibly have. That would be my goal."

The department met for the first time Wednesday night after Vine's appointment as the new chief. He named Troy Parson assistant chief, and appointed Dave Honas and Dustin Vine as captains.

"We have a very good department now," Vine said. "We have a lot of people with a lot of experience. You could have picked a number of different people to be chief, and they would have done very well. I'm lucky to have a lot of really good, super people on the fire department to work with."