Fire chief: Firefighting is becoming a family tradition

RUSSELLVILLE — Melvin Stubinger has shared an active involvement in community fire protection with three generations of his family in the Russellville-Lohman area.

His father helped organize the department 59 years ago. His son is a captain on the Russellville-Lohman Fire Protection District alongside him. And now his grandson has joined the organization’s junior firefighter program.

“I don’t know why I decided to do it,” Stubinger said. “Most generally, people are running out of the house and here you are going in.

“At the time, I thought I was doing something for the community to help.”

The first big event Stubinger responded to was a 1990 second-story fire in downtown Russellville. It affected the adjacent accounting office, antique store and beauty shop.

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