Chief Chris O’Brien of Shreveport, Resigns
Another veteran fire fighter is to lay down the cares of office after thirty years of service. Fire Chief Chris O’Brien, of Shreveport, La., known from coast to coast, will retire on August 15. The announcement of this decision on the part of Chief O’Brien came on June 24 after the receipt of a letter from him by Commissioner of Public Safety R. L. Stringfellow. In the introduction of his letter Chief O’Brien says:
“When I first started to write this letter J thought it would be an easy task, but I find that it is the hardest thing that I have ever attempted. I want to offer this to you as my resignation as chief of the fire department, effective August 15th. 1923.”
The chief then goes on to express his regret in leaving the fire department hut reminds the commissioner of the condition in which he found himself last year, and says that in view of the calls that are made on every fire chief in answering alarms at all times of day or night, in all kinds of weather, his physician has advised most strongly against his continuing as head of the department. After thanking the commissioner for his kindness and friendship, the chief continues:
“I feel that in resigning I am leaving the fire department in good and capable hands. I hope that you will not think it is presumption on my part in suggesting to you that Capt. S. J. Flores be made your chief. I make this recommendation with no thought of disparagement or reflection on any man in the Shreveport fire department. Of course, as you know, some must lead and some must follow, and Captain Flores has been my special pride and I feel that the department may be even more ably administered in his hands than in mine.”
The chief closes his letter by assuring the commissioner that the prosperity and good of the Shreveport fire department will always be uppermost in his mind, and he will stand ready and willing to lend his aid in any way desired. He expresses his thanks to the mayor and commissioners and all the members of the department who have served under him.
Chief O’Brien has been a member of the fire department for thirty years, and has served as chief for twenty years. On November 10, 1921, the chief was compelled to relinquish active duty on account of his health breaking down and was sent to El Paso, Texas, where he rested and treated his illness for ten months, resuming his duties in the latter part of October, 1922. His health, however, has been by no means rugged since that time, and his physician has finally insisted upon his laying down the cares of office.
Houston’s New Fire Station Opened—The new fire-police station of Houston, Texas, was opened on June 15 in connection with a flag raising ceremony arranged by members of both departments. Several hundred persons visited the building, as they were shown through the structure the improvements and features of the new station were explained. Refreshments were served on the roof garden throughout the evening.