FREDERICKTOWN, Ohio (WCMH) – The village of Fredericktown in Knox County honored one of its best-known unofficial ambassadors Saturday at the local fire station.
Brad Porter is developmentally disabled, but that doesn’t stop him from working or interacting with the people in his community, and anyone who knows Brad will tell you how much he enjoys helping people.
This is why the Fredericktown Community Fire District named Brad an honorary firefighter.
Amid all the fanfare, people turned out in Fredericktown for Brad – including an Elvis Presley impersonator because Porter is a big fan.
“He’ll be one of the guys,” said Fredericktown Community Fire Chief Scott Mast. “We’re going to treat him like one of the guys and he’ll fit right in.”
Brad’s parents, Bill and Vickie Porter, pinned his badge to his fire department uniform.
“I think he gets a feeling of belonging to the community,” Bill Porter said. “Everybody cares about him and he knows that.”
Mast helped Brad get into his new firefighting gear and showed him to his locker at the station.
“Everybody knows Brad, everybody loves Brad,” he said. “Brad loves everybody and that’s what makes it so special.”
And since he was already suited up, the men and women of the Fredericktown Community Fire District had a little training for Brad: leading the charge on the fire hose.
Brad didn’t hesitate when asked what his favorite part of his special day was.
“Putting out that fire,” he said. “It makes me feel good knowing that I’m helping somebody else out.”
Mast said Brad will play a big part in community outreach and is always welcome at the fire station.
Brad said the only thing he’s not looking forward to is washing all of the fire trucks.