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Answering the Call: Kim Linnell

Jun 01, 2018 06:47AM ● Published by Editor

Kim Linnell is dressed in his fire gear and ready for action. The longtime volunteer said he was inspired to become a volunteer firefighter to give back to his community.  Photo courtesy of Valerie Marasco

By: Valerie Marasco, Director – Cook County Office of Emergency Management & Public Information - June 1, 2018


Kim Linnell is a founding member of the Colvill Fire Department. He served on the board that organized the department in 1996, and served as Colvill's first chief for 10 years. He is currently still serving as the assistant chief.

Kim has lived in the Colvill district since 1983, and is the owner/operator of Almost Home Appliances in Grand Marais. During his time with the department, Kim has achieved certifications for Firefighter 1 and 2, Cold Water and Highlevel Rescue, Medical First Responder, Vehicle Rescue, Arson Investigation and Pyrotechnic Training, to name just a few.

Linnell was inspired to join and help form the department out of a sense of wanting to do more for his community, to "give back" and help his neighbors in need. When asked about his favorite aspect of being on the Colvill Department, it is by far the kinship he feels with his fellow firefighters. “It truly is a brotherhood/sisterhood - helping neighbors, and getting to play with all the tools (toys) of the trade,” said Assistant Chief Linnell.

His most memorable experience with the department was assisting on the search for a lost child in the woods near his home. "It was near dark and there was a huge rainstorm imminent. The feeling when we found him was indescribable – a sense of incredible satisfaction and relief, for the parents as well as responders," he said. That is the main motivation for the effort, Linnell says, to help someone and see positive results in the end – and there is always something new to learn!

He would tell potential volunteers, "You will be well-trained for the job we do. You will constantly learn new things and you will make an important contribution to yourself, your family and your community. It is a commitment, but it is well worth the effort."

For more information and helpful tips about Emergency Preparedness from the Cook County Emergency Management Community, follow this link.  http://www.boreal-emergency.org

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