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Franklin Fire Battalion Chief Jimmy Jennings Retires
Franklin, TN — After 25 years with the Franklin Fire Department, Battalion Chief Jimmy Jennings will retire today. He was honored at a surprise luncheon last week at the Franklin Fire Training Center.
A Dickson, TN native, Jennings followed in the footsteps of his father and grandfather and became a firefighter after graduating from Dickson County High School. He served on the Dickson Fire Department for five years, before being hired by the Franklin Fire Department in 1994 by Chief Sam Liggett. There were two existing stations at the time, with Station 3 at the intersection of Mallory Station Road and Seaboard Lane under construction. Today the Franklin Fire Department has eight stations and a training center.
Jennings worked his way through the ranks, serving as a firefighter, engineer, lieutenant, captain, and battalion chief. In his present role, Jennings serves as Battalion Chief of Training where he is responsible for recruit firefighter training, departmental in-service training, federal and state certifications and compliance, multi-company drills, and new equipment training.
Jennings has overseen the training of seven recruit firefighter classes since being promoted to battalion chief in 2014, representing 81 firefighters and nine Middle Tennessee departments.
Jennings’ most memorable calls occurred during the May 2010 flood for which he earned two Medals of Valor and a Meritorious Service Award in the span of 24 hours.
On May 2, 2010 just after 8 AM, Jennings was among the team of Franklin Firefighters who rescued an individual who was trapped on top of her car in a flooded area of Waddell Hollow Road and Old Hillsboro Road. They responded to the scene at the request of the Williamson County Rescue Squad for mutual aid.
On May 3, 2010, an explosion just before 2 AM in a flooded Fieldstone Farms home sent flames shooting in the air, and the fire quickly spread to the adjacent home. Jennings helped fight the side-by-side blazes in waist-high water, earning a Meritorious Service Award.
Less than three hours later near 4:30 AM on May 3, 2010, two volunteer firefighters became trapped on top of a truck in a flooded area of McDaniel Road and Lamb Road while trying to rescue a man from the vehicle. Franklin Firefighters responded to the scene at the request of the Arrington Volunteer Fire Department for mutual aid to perform the rescue.
Additionally, Jennings received a Phoenix Award in 2009 for saving the life of a patient who was in cardiac arrest. The patient made a complete recovery. He was also recognized for his deployment to Gold Beach, Oregon last year with the Tennessee Incident Management Team to assist with management of the Klondike Wildfire which burned more than 175,000 acres.
Jennings, who is a fire investigator, is very involved with the International Association of Arson Investigators where he presently serves as the 1st Vice President of the Tennessee Chapter. He is also Past President of the Tennessee Advisory Committee on Arson and a member of the National Association of Fire Investigators.
Upon retirement, Jennings will continue to operate his fire investigation company, Origin & Cause Investigative Resources.
Franklin Fire Chief Rocky Garzarek said, “We are grateful for Battalion Chief Jennings’ bravery, dedication, service, and contributions to this community and to our department. He has made an impression on many lives and will be missed. We wish him the best in his retirement, and he will always be a part of our firefighting family.”
Jennings and his wife Sarah live in Dickson. They have three daughters and a son.