New Peru firefighter sworn in

‘It’s all I’ve ever wanted to do,’ Hamblen says

Peru Mayor Ken Kolowski swearing-in new firefighter Brandon Hamblen as a full-time fireman for the Peru Fire Department during Monday’s City Council meeting.

Brandon Hamblen was sworn in as a full-time fireman for the Peru Fire Department during Monday’s City Council meeting.

Hamblen, who recently moved to La Salle with his family, said he can’t remember a time he didn’t want to be a fireman. He worked a few blue-collar jobs but always found a way to pursue his dream career.

“It’s all I’ve ever wanted to do,” he said. “I took some labor jobs. I still resorted back to wanting to be a fireman. Pretty much since the day I can remember and I’ve just stuck with it.”

Peru Fire Chief Jeff King gave a brief background on Hamblen and welcomed him to the department before he was sworn in.

Hamblen began his career at Big Rock before transferring to Coal City. He was a lieutenant at the Morris Fire Protection District before coming to Peru and has been in the fire service for 10 years and has accrued several certifications, Chief Jeff King said.

Hamblen said he took the test two years ago to become a full-time fireman in Peru.

“They were the first to call me with a full-time position, so I took it,” he said.

King said Hamblen was chosen to join the department because of the testing process and that Hamblen was one of two candidates on the list. The other was hired last year.

“A lot of his certifications are going to help us right off the bat, " he said. “He’s experienced and he was a lieutenant, so he’s proven himself.”

Hamblen said he is looking forward to everything he is going to learn during his time in Peru and his professional advancement.

“The experience is pretty similar to Morris,” he said. “So, (I look forward to) gaining the same experience that I was gaining there and furthering my career.”

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