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Spencer’s interim fire chief becomes permanent chief

By Amanda Raymond
amanda.raymond@salisburypost.com

SPENCER – Spencer’s interim fire chief has become its permanent fire chief.

Starting on Nov. 30, Gray Grubb was appointed as the fire chief for the Spencer Fire Department. He had been serving as interim fire chief since January.

Jay Baker, who works with the Salisbury Fire Department, was serving as interim fire chief before Grubb came on board. According to Town Manager Reid Walters, Baker decided to re-enter retirement from the Spencer Fire Department last autumn and served his last day as interim fire chief on Dec. 31 of last year.

Grubb served as Spencer’s 15th fire chief for two years and resigned in 2012 because he was moving out of the area.

Grubb said he still lives out of town, but not too far away in Churchland.

“I’m glad to be back,” Grubb said.

Grubb was born and raised in Spencer and first got involved with the fire department in 2003. He said his father and grandfather were also in the department.

Town Manager Reid Walters said the department has seen improvements since Grubb’s return.

“Fire services have improved since he’s come on board and the morale of the department has improved,” he said.

Those improvements include a full roster of firefighters at 30, including volunteers and part-time firefighters, new air packs and the start of a live-in program. The department will also be purchasing a ladder truck from Salisbury.

“We’ve come a long way in the past year,” Grubb said.

Grubb said another project he is working on is expanding to some kind of 24-hour coverage period.

Mayor Jim Gobbel said he was pleased that Grubb was Spencer’s new fire chief.

“Gray has worked hard since he came back to work as our interim chief,” he wrote in an email.

Gobbel and Walters both said Grubb has improved morale in the department.

“When it comes down to it, he’s a good leader and he has good guys working for him,” Walters said.

Contact reporter Amanda Raymond at 704-797-4222.

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