Chief Riddick is the founding Fire Chief of Bethany-Salem Volunteer Fire Department. Prior to beginning his Firefighting career Chief Riddick served his country in the United States Air Force. Upon honorable discharge, Chief Riddick began his firefighting career with the City of Marietta Fire Department in 1959. During his career with the City of Marietta, he received numerous awards, including a "Life Saving Award" for saving the life of an 8 month old girl who had drowned. Chief Riddick retired from the City of Marietta as a Captain of his station.
Chief Riddick passed away on December 31, 2018.
Chief Prather was raised in a “firefighting family.” At the young age of thirteen, he began participating in the Volunteer Rescue Unit in Pickens alongside his father. At age fifteen, he joined the Jasper Volunteer Firefighters again to work alongside and under the direct supervision of his dad. During his senior year, in the Spring of 1977, he signed up to join the United States Marine Corps. After graduating high school, he worked a short period of four months as a career firefighter with Jasper FD and then he departed for his service in the USMC. He served most of his tour at the Twenty nine Palms Marine Corps Air Ground Combat in California where he worked as a structure firefighter with the base fire department until his “honorable” discharge in September 1980. In 1982 he returned and served the USMC Reserves at Dobbins AFD in Marietta until 1990.
Upon discharge from active duty, from 1980 to 1987, Chief Prather worked in “law enforcement” with the Jasper Police Department, Cherokee County Sheriff’s Dept. and finally Pickens County Sheriff’s Dept. During this period of time, Chief Prather maintained membership with the Jasper Volunteer Dept. and the Pickens Rescue Unit. In 1987, Chief Prather graduated from Reinhardt College with an Associate Degree in Criminal Justice. In 1990, he was a founding member of the Bethany-Salem Fire Dept. in Pickens County and served several years as Chairman of the Pickens County Fire Chief Association. Chief Prather was also a “part time” employee with the Pickens County Ambulance Service for several years.
In February 1987, Chief Prather began his career with Cherokee County as a firefighter with the Oak Grove Fire Dept. at Station-1. He received his EMT Certification in 1988. He progressed through the ranks of “Senior Man” (Sgt. today), Lieutenant and Captain over the next 18 years or so. He was instrumental in developing and delivering fire apparatus “pumping operations” for many years. In May 2006, Chief Prather accepted the appointment to the position of Divisions Chief of Operations and in 2008 appointed to Assistant Fire Chief of Department. in September of 2011 Chief Prather, was promoted as the Fire Chief for Cherokee County.
Chief Godin joined the Bethany Salem Fire Department in 2004. He brought to the department years of "business leadership." After joining the fire service he quickly moved up the ranks obtaining his Mod 1 and First Responder Certifications, Lieutenant and then Captain. He has also received a "Life-Saving Award" on one of the many calls he has ran. He has received the Frank P Riddick award for most calls several years, as well as Firefighter of the Year from BSVFD multiple times.
Upon taking on the Chief's role, he overseen the construction of the new station on Henderson Mountain Rd, from the ground up often on site from morning until late evening, making sure everything was done to his approval! He is still at the station many hours when in town, working on his " to do list!"
Chief Godin and his wife Pam currently split their time between Jasper and perfecting his golf game and fishing in Florida.