Friends, family, and fellow comrades gathered to honor Ricke Whiteside on Friday afternoon at a reception celebrating his 18-year service to the El Dorado Fire Department.
Interim Police Chief Curt Zieman presented Whiteside with a traditional firehouse challenge coin to commemorate his dedication and service.
“Everyone thought a lot of him,” said Captain Max Brown. “The brotherhood of firefighters will miss him.”
Several speakers stood and spoke fondly of Whiteside during the ceremony, taking time to remember his bravery and loyalty to his firefighter family.
“We’ve spent more than half our lives together,” said Whiteside. “We’ve fought a number of good fires over the years.”
In true fashion of a dedicated leader, Whiteside took a moment during his own retirement ceremony to present one last award to Dylan Woodbridge and Derick Boggs for their quick thinking while delivering a set of twins in late December.
In all, Whiteside served the city 34 years in all, starting with the Department of Public Safety.