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Erwin fire chief honored by governor

Erwin Record Photo by Richard Rourk / State Sen. Rusty Crowe presented the award to Chief Bailey.

Gov. Bill Lee has recognized Erwin Fire Chief Darren Bailey for his many years of public service with a special award that was presented to the veteran official last week.

State Senator Rusty Crowe hand-delivered the Governor’s Colonel Aide de Camp Award to Bailey on Feb. 26.

“While speaking with Governor Lee, it became apparent that Chief Bailey is well-deserving of this award,” Crowe said. “I don’t think I’ve seen a history of service like this. I’m thrilled that Governor Lee agreed that this honor was well deserved.”

According to Crowe, Bailey first served the community as a young man by joining the armed services.

“He joined the military in 1986 and he served in a variety of roles and offices including military aviation and military intelligence,” Crowe said. “He returned home and started a career in law enforcement that landed Bailey in a variety of roles that ranged from Homeland Security, FBI and the ATF.”

Bailey joined the Erwin Fire Department in the mid 1990s as a volunteer, and he has served as chief since 2006.

Bailey, who humbly accepted the award, was honored to receive the recognition from Crowe. “This man does so much for the county that the community will never know,” Bailey said. “I’m honored and surprised to be recognized.”

News of the award spread quickly throughout town hall.

“We are so proud of Chief Bailey and he has done a wonderful job for Erwin,” Erwin Mayor Glenn White told The Erwin Record.

Town of Erwin Alderman Michael Baker was also happy to see Bailey get recognized.

“Thank you ‘Doc’ for your service as Town of Erwin Fire Chief, and congratulations on receiving the honorary title of Colonel Aide de Camp from the Governor,” Baker said.

The Colonel Aide de Camp is awarded to a Tennessee citizen for outstanding achievement. The Colonel Aide de Camp can only be awarded at the request of a member of the Tennessee General Assembly.