SIMPSONVILLE, S.C. (WSPA) – The oldest firefighter in South Carolina, Robert Smith, turned 90.
His birthday was January 15th.
Smith is a founding member of Clear Springs Fire and Rescue in Simpsonville where he’s been working as a firefighter for the past 36 years.
Friday night, his family and firefighter friends got together to throw him a 90th birthday party.
Smith has the highest call rate of any volunteer in the department. Last year he went on 100 calls. To put that in perspective, most volunteers go on about 40 to 50 calls in a year.
“You can depend on him to be there, day or night, any type of weather,” Clear Springs Fire Chief, Gabe Mull said.
However, he says there is motivation for him to stay active.
“Stay young,” Robert Smith said. “If you set down to do nothing, you’ll get a big stomach sticking out, (laughs) not doing anything. I enjoy working. I enjoy the fire department.”
Smith doesn’t still go into burning buildings. However, his fellow firefighters say he will help run whatever gear they may need and also directs traffic around scenes.
The other firefighters say he’s someone they continue to look up to and a mentor.