Several firefighters from the surrounding area visited retired Wichita firefighter Mike Sawyer at Wheat State Manor in Whitewater Friday morning.
Sawyer was a firefighter for 35 years and retired as a Lieutenant. Sawyer retired in May of 2011.
Firefighters from the Whitewater River, Wichita and Newton Departments paid respects to Sawyer and the Whitewater River Fire Department brought out an engine for Mike to examine.
Whitewater Firefighter Jeff Toews worked with Sawyer in Wichita for about 25 years.
“Mike was a lot of fun to be around,” Toews said. “He was a great guy at the station. He was a hard worker. He enjoyed a few pranks once in a while, which most of us did.”
Despite the pranks, Toews said Sawyer was the consemate professional
“He was always thinking. If we were on a scene and we couldn’t figure something out, Mike was the go to guy. He could think outside the box. He was one of those guys.”
Also attending was Mike’s brother, Tom Sawyer.
“He moved around kind of roaming Lieutenant to different departments so he got to know a lot of people,” Tom Sawyer said. “That was his life. That was everything he talked about. He enjoyed his job tremendously. That was just the thing that he wanted to do.”
Currently a resident of Wheat State Manor, Mike grew up in Park City and Wichita. He also lived in Halstead after retirement.
Mike has three children, four grandchildren and one step grandchild.