Greaves Honored for Service

photo by Vanessa Fournier | Walden Fire Chief Jason Larrabee (left) presents Marvin “Butch” Greaves (right) with an engraved firefighter’s axe in recognition of his 50 years of service to the Walden Fire Department.

WALDEN – The Walden Fire Department’s open house served as the backdrop for the surprise presentation of an engraved firefighter’s axe to the First Assistant Chief Marvin “Butch” Greaves, recognizing his 50-plus years of service as a Walden firefighter.

Greaves was one of the founding members of the Walden Fire Department 52 years ago, starting when he was 25 years old, and there wasn’t even a fire truck. Members went door-to- door to get donations for firefighter equipment, money to pay for fuel, and turnout gear, and they held annual auctions and barbecues as fundraisers.

photo by Vanessa Fournier | Three generations of Greaves family firefighters gathered for a special lifetime achievement presentation given to Marvin “Butch” Greaves during the Walden Emergency Services Open House on September 18. Pictured are Marvin “Butch” Greaves (middle) holding an engraved firefighters axe he was presented for his 50 years as a Walden firefighter. Butch is currently the 1st Assistant Chief, his son Paul C. Greaves (left), the 2nd Assistant Chief and his grandson Branden Greaves (right), who was in the Walden Fire Department for five years, is now a firefighter with the St. Johnsbury Fire Department

One of our first fire trucks was a surplus army truck with a tank and pump installed. The folks hired to paint it painted it orange instead of red, and it was nicknamed “Big Ugly.” It wasn’t until 1971 that the Walden Fire Department purchased its first real engine, and Greaves served as fire chief from 1974 through 1985.

photo by Vanessa Fournier | Joining Walden 1st Assistant Chief Marvin “Butch” Greaves (left) for his 50 years of service presentation are Cabot Fire chief Walter “Skip” Bothfeld Jr. (30 years), Walden fire Chief Jason Larrabee (2 years) and Hyde Park Town Fire Chief Brad Carriere (1 year).

Greaves has served the Town of Walden, as well as area towns in the mutual aid group, first as a firefighter, then as an assistant chief and fire chief. He currently serves as assistant chief under Chief Jason Larrabee. Greaves also served regionally as second vice president, vice president and president of the Capitol Fire Mutual Aid System, which continues to this day.

He is the father, and grandfather of Walden firefighters: his son, Paul C. Greaves, is currently second assistant chief, and his grandson, Brenden Greaves, who was formerly a Walden firefighter, is currently a firefighter-EMT with St. Johnsbury Fire Department.

photo by Vanessa Fournier | Sparky and Smokey Bear attended the Walden Emergency Services Open House held at the fire station September 18. Behind them is the Vermont Division of Fire and Safety smoke trailer.