Today, I will.
In August of 2000 I came to live in Sturbridge. The first neighbor I met was Vernon Jackson. "Butch", as he has always gone by, welcomed me to town in his own quiet style. Butch is a quiet man, a loyal, and caring man. He loves this town with all his heart, in fact, he was born right in a house on the Town Common. Since that time, he served his country, married the love of his life, had three children, and a whole bunch of grandchildren. He has also been in each, and every home around the common, and elsewhere in town, helping with repairs, lending a tool, and his expertise. Without out so much as a wince, he lent me tools, and his know how to help in my rehab of the house I once lived in. He never expected anything in return, but instead he would invite me, and others to his house on the lake for a cookout. He never asked for anything in return. He only gave.
He has been there to lend a hand, and to help, no matter what life has thrown your way, all his life. That's just the kind of man he is. Never negative.
One thing that I enjoyed hearing from Butch was the love of the towns fire department. He was a Captain, had been on the department for decades, and played Santa at Christmas time on the common. His love for people showed in his commitment to keep them safe as a firefighter.
I had grown up in a town where a large group of us "townies" had begun to serve as volunteers on the fire, and police department at an early age. I recognized the commitment, and love for the job Butch did at the fire department immediately. That loyalty to the department, and his commitment to make others safe at risk to his own safety has only heightened my respect for Butch.
If you have ever had contact with the man, then you know I speak the truth, and if anything, I have not spoken highly enough of him.
Now, the Chairman of the Board of Selectmen, has had Butch terminated from his civilian position of Assistant to the Fire Chief he has held since January because, according to Butch, how he spoke up, and questioned the methodology, and conclusions of the report written by the consultant hired by the town. He has also been accused of harassment by Tom Creamer.
"Harassment". Really? Butch Jackson? I don't think so. Explain this to me.
In addition to the debacle we have seen regarding our Fire Chief, and the recent announcement that he is retiring ASAP, we have the Chairman firing Butch in closed door session of the BOS.
Enough. Now, I'm pissed.
Article published May 11, 2013
Veteran Sturbridge officer slams fire report
Chief ousted after document released