Cincinnati Fire Chief Richard Braun retiring

Posted at 7:11 PM, Mar 30, 2017
and last updated 2017-03-30 19:11:44-04

CINCINNATI -- The Cincinnati fire chief is hanging up his boots for good next week.

Chief Richard Braun is retiring after decades in firefighting. During that time, he said a lot has changed for the better.

"Now our firefighters are trained so much, with bomb technicians and hazmat technicians. I sometimes say they shouldn't even be called 'firefighters.' I saw they should be called 'all-hazard technicians' because they do so much," Braun said.

But why did he suit up in the first place? Braun credits his wife.

"I had no interest in it," he said. "It wasn't my thing to do. But because she would talk about it so much, I started visiting firehouses, and I fell in love with it, and I went home and announced to her that I was going to be a firefighter."

Braun spent 36 years working in Columbus and the last six in Cincinnati. He's overseen lots of changes to the department.

The biggest change came from a report after firefighter Daryl Gordon died fighting a fire in an apartment building.

"But we rebounded," Braun said. "They're resiliant and we rebounded and we moved forward."

The chief shared this advice for up-and-coming firefighters.

"It's one where you'll get a good living. But it's very demanding. It will take all that you have to give, and you have to be a good thinker," he said. "And, you have to go into dangerous conditions."

His last official day on the job is April 8. He said he's moving to Orlando, Florida and plans to go to Disney World.