United States Deputy Fire Administrator and retired Fairfax County (VA) Chief Glenn Gaines has passed away, according to news reports.
“Once or twice in a lifetime, if you’re very lucky, you’ll have a great boss or a best friend like Glenn Gaines; he was both to me,” said Dr. Denis Onieal, Superintendent of the National Fire Academy. “Glenn was smart, funny, generous, passionate, focused, held himself and others to the highest of standards, and always had your back. Always. He was as talented and comfortable crawling down the hallway of a burning tenement as he was in a meeting in the Oval Office or Congress. On Sunday, our nation and our profession lost a remarkable leader; the Gaines family lost a beloved husband, father, and grandfather. Keep them in your thoughts and prayers during these difficult times. Glenn would ask that you give those you love an extra hug tonight.”
Glenn A. Gaines was the Federal Emergency Management Agency’s (FEMA) Deputy U.S. Fire Administrator for the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA). He began his tenure in March 2009 and was responsible for managing USFA programs and training activities conducted at the National Emergency Training Center.
Chief Gaines began his fire service career as a member of the Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Department in Virginia. He served in numerous capacities over the course of his 35-year career, including Fire Marshal, Chief Training Officer, and Chief of Operations, culminating in his appointment as Fire Chief from August 1991 until December 1998. He was in charge of the nationally recognized Fairfax County Fire and Rescue Urban Search and Rescue team that frequently deployed throughout the United States as well as internationally. He served as a faculty member at the USFA’s National Fire Academy, and was actively involved with organizations related to the professional development of the fire and emergency services.
Few details were available on his passing as of this writing.