After more than 20 years of serving the Radium community as a firefighter, Tim Strub’s hard work and dedication to extinguishing fires has been rewarded.
The 58-year-old Radium resident is moving back to his Ontario home on May 7th to live closer to family.
He was surprised that roughly 50 people came together to enjoy supper and speeches at the Prestige Inn Radium Hot Springs on April 18th to mark the end of his volunteer firefighting career.
“The fire department in Radium is like my second family,” Tim told The Valley Echo, while reflecting on the time he spent with the volunteer crew. “Everybody takes care of everybody; and we’re just like one big family.”
But the idea of signing up to volunteer more than two decades ago was ultimately not his decision.
It was thanks to the persistence of his friend, Walter Raven, that Tim enlisted.
“I was working at the same company with a fellow who was on the Radium fire department at the time,” Tim explained. “He still is a member, but I had just started working here, and I had just moved to Radium. He asked me what I was doing on Wednesday night, which is when our practices were back then, and he said, ‘Well, you’re going to join the fire department.’ So, I did.”
The challenge of filling the boots of a volunteer firefighter was not an easy fit, he added.
“When I started at the fire department, I knew absolutely nothing about the service,” said Tim. “But I joined (them) as a volunteer.”
He became the Radium Fire Department’s training officer and then began to volunteer as the deputy chief.
“Now I’ve been doing that for 18 years,” he said. “We all have to learn how to do everything because we never know who can show up, so it’s a constant training session.”
The biggest challenge for Tim to get a handle on during his time as a volunteer was learning how to operate all the equipment.
“Everybody’s a little nervous about volunteering at first,” he said. “They don’t think that they’re able to do it, but they’re dead wrong.”
He urges prospective candidates to apply as volunteers as he values all of the lessons that one can learn from the experience.
“Everybody always commented about how much they learned from what I taught them,” said Tim, “but the truth is that it goes both ways: I learned quite a bit from them as well.”
It came as no surprise to the community when Tim’s efforts were recognized at a banquet to mark the end of an era.
“We gave him a couple of small gifts,” said Dave Dixon, Radium Fire Chief. “A watch and his barbecue apron. He always ended up on the barbecue if we had an open house. He liked doing that.
“We’re certainly going to miss his companionship and his expertise, but we wish him the best of luck in the
That his helmet and cooking apron were both signed by everybody on the Radium Fire Department was a highlight for Tim. He’s pleased these mementos were offered to him to take away.
“I was quite impressed,” said Tim. “Council was there, all of the fire department was there, their members and their spouses, the RCMP had a representative there and it was quite the deal. I wasn’t expecting to see as many people there as there were.”