Salute Our Heroes: Bryce Romine serves two leadership roles to protect Osage County
LYNDON, Kan. (WIBW) - Osage County Emergency Management Director Bryce Romine believes his mission to keep people informed and prepared has guided him through various urgent situations throughout his career.
"Transparency is very important that we get the right word out to our citizens here in the county. We're here to support them. I don't try to hide anything from people. If we have an issue we gotta get it out there to let everyone know."
Amid the pandemic, creating a judgment free dialogue with residents of Osage County has been particularly meaningful to him.
“No question is stupid; I ask questions all the time about things and some of them may seem a little off the wall, but if you don’t ask you’re not gonna know,” he said.
"Situational awareness is very important and I think our citizens deserve that."
Romine's service-oriented mindset has shown itself in many forms throughout his career, beginning with time in the army reserves followed by eight years on K-state's Police Department.
It's when he came back home to Lyndon to take over his father's business he became involved with a lifelong love.
Romine served as a volunteer firefighter in Lyndon and describes firefighting as something that “gets in your blood after a short period of time”.
After seeing a need for more equipment to combat blazes after a series of house fires, he became one of the founders of Fire District 5 in the early 1980s.
Now as Fire Chief, one of his main joys is training the future of the force.
"I enjoy working with people, especially younger firefighters and try to develop them into people who will stay on the volunteer fire department."
No matter how he serves the people of Osage County, Romine says he strives to make his work a reflection of his values.
"Being able to go to a scene and see that we've done everything we can to protect and preserve property and to save life and protect the environment, that's huge, all part of our jobs," he said.
“Somebody’s gotta do it and I always thought it was part of my job in life to help people, be it being a volunteer firefighter or doing everything I can to assist people in their time of need.”
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