Captain Marshall "Jack" Rumley

    Growing up, it was apparent that being a firefighter’s child (at that time they were called firemen, there were no lady firefighters) set the stage for very different family dynamics. My father, Marshall Jack Rumley, known by many as Captain Jack, did not work an 8 to 5 job, like most people’s dads. My dad worked a 24 hour shift, on 24 and off twenty-four. On his day off, he ran his own business, Jack’s Used Auto Parts.

    My dad was a busy man. I did not see him often. Even though our time was limited, l do have some fond memories. My dad taught me to fish with a cane pole. When l won a fishing rod from Eddie Clark’s Esso, he told me that he would take me fishing at the coast-as soon as l could cast from the street to the sidewalk. Of course, l practiced, and he took me to Captain Highfill’s place. My dad loved to fish, and would take a yearly trip to Cape Hatteras with his firefighter friends.

    My dad valued his job and his firehouse family. I can remember two specific times when he was not on duty, helping out when there were fires. Once, after a visit to the junk yard, we saw a house on fire on Yanceyville. My dad stopped to help the family. They wanted to save their new television set. He went inside their home, saved their TV, and waited with them until the fire trucks arrived. My second memory is of Dad, helping the county fire department fight a fire at Langford Church, after the wooden steeple had been hit by lightning.

    Being Jack’s daughter had benefits, such as riding on the fire truck in the parade, while Chief Moon Wyrick played Santa. Other benefits were the cookouts at Station Eleven. What other kid could say she went to dinner at the firehouse, and played with other kids, as well as JE McCarter’s children?

    Many people know that Jack loved cars, especially his 1969 Ford Torino Talladega. He loved that car, and was restoring it when he passed away. Sadly, he could not finish the restoration. I had that car completely restored, and l take it to local car shows to honor the memory of my dad, Jack Rumley.

    The lasting friendships my dad made through the fire department were some of his fondest memories. Thank you, to the special men and women who were a part of his life, while on the job and into his retirement.
by: Marsha Rumley