South Sioux City's Fire Department has officially added two new firefighters/paramedics to their team.
Payne Allen and Qwinn Wright took part in a pinning ceremony and were introduced to the city council and community during Monday night's city council meeting.
Allen grew up in Alcester and Hudson, South Dakota, and graduated from Alcester-Hudson High School in 1998. He has been a volunteer firefighter in Hawarden, Iowa, for the last 15 years. He has a wife Jessica and four children: Cheriden, Charity, Alexis and Shane.
Wright grew up in South Sioux City and graduated from high school in 2001. He received a degree in Fire Protection Technology from the University of Nebraska Omaha in 2006. Wright has various fire and EMS degrees and an extensive work history in the fire safety field. He has a wife Abbey and two sons: Caden and William.
“It's almost like a new adventure every day,” said Clint Merithew, fire chief. “They both have so many ideas that they bring to the table.”
Merithew said that pinning ceremonies were not done before he started last year and he considers the procedure important for several reasons.
“This is a great opportunity for the council to meet the new members of the department and hear their bios,” he said. “I just really enjoy sharing all we do over here with the council and the community, as well.”