(This week The Columbian-Progress spotlights Columbia Fire B-Shift Captain Reggie Crowther.)
Q: When and where were you born?
A: I was born here in Columbia Jan. 27, 1981, and raised in the Hub community all my life.
Q: Where did you attend school?
A: I graduated from East Marion High School.
Q: Where do you work? Tell us about your job/company.
A: I joined the Columbia Fire Department in March 2003, and I’ve been here ever since. I’m the captain of B-Shift. On a day-to-day basis we have a session where we do training at certain times of day so everybody is equipped with what they need to do every day. In our daily routine, everybody has their certain sections they need to clean, have to take care of the trucks, make sure the equipment is good and make sure everyone is accounted for.
Q: What led you to your profession?
A: For one, it was an interesting job I had heard a lot of people talking about. I thought, “Well, they have good standards and people look up to the fire departments.” It’s sort of like a hero role as you would say. I decided to try it out to see how it was, and 15 years later I’m still here. I enjoy what I do.
Q: What do you enjoy most about your job?
A: What I enjoy most about it is the time you spend with the guys away from home. It’s like our second home, and we all become brothers. When family comes in, everybody knows each other’s families. All combined we’re one big family.
Q: What was your first job?
A: I had a job working at a detail shop for about two years, detailing and washing cars. That was the only other job I’ve had.
Q: Who is the person who has been most influential in your life?
A: My granddaddy, Monroe, and grandma, Mary, instilled in me to become a better person, help others and give back. They taught me to take that leadership role in anything you have to do and showed me how to be a grown man. Also, they taught me how to be a positive father figure to my daughter, Ashyia, who will be 11 in July.
Q: If you could relive one day from your life, which day would you choose?
A: The first day my granddad took me hunting because I really had fun that day and it was a good adventure. We went ‘coon hunting.
Q: If you could have anything for your last meal on earth, what would it be?
A: I would say it would have to be mashed potatoes and gravy with a pork chop.
Q: If you could travel anywhere in the world, where would you go?
A: I would want to try Jamaica, and I think I would like Hawaii.
Q: What hobbies do you like to do in your spare time?
A: I love my dogs. I raise dogs and have a lot. I have bulldogs and bully dogs. It’s a hobby I picked up from my granddad also. I love spending time with my child. I like fishing, riding 4-wheelers and softball. I coach a softball women’s team.
Q: What do you enjoy about living and working in Columbia and Marion County?
A: The people we’re always around and the atmosphere. There are a lot of joyful people and a lot of neighborly people. You get familiar with a lot of families, and it becomes a routine. Every day you see them. A lot of people look up to me because of the type of job I have. Even older people look up to me because of the lifestyle I have instilled in this job, and everybody appreciates what I do. It’s always good hearing from people about the good job we’re doing.
Q: If you could have lunch with anyone from your life or history, who would it be and why?
A: I think Martin Luther King Jr. because I love the way he instilled in people in wanting people to be equal, everybody to get along with each other, appreciate one another and everybody to come together.
Q: Would you rather read a good book or watch a good movie and why?
A: I believe a good book because I believe I might not get a chance to watch that movie again right away, but I could get my hands on that book.
Q: What moment in your life has had the biggest impact on you?
A: I saved a little 2-year-old boy from drowning, I think in 2006. That was my first time dealing with a situation like that at this job. We were able to get him out of the pool, give him CPR and bring him back to life. That was a pretty proud moment for me. Till this day he calls me “Uncle Reggie” even though we aren’t kin. I appreciate my job even more from that situation happening.
Q: What would be the No. 1 thing on your Bucket List?
A: The No. 1 thing on my bucket list would be to fly a helicopter. It seems like it would be exciting and kind of nervous at the same time. It’s something I would want to learn how to do.
Q: If you could describe your morals in three words, what would they be?
A: Love, laugh and respect.
Q: How would you like to be remembered?
A: I want to be remembered as a person who always did his best at whatever he had, always made the best of any situation he was put in and have the ability to adapt and overcome any situation.
— Joshua Campbell
Pictured Above: Columbia Fire B-Shift Captain Reggie Crowther’s forearms feature tattoos commemorating the lives of his grandparents, Monroe and Mary Crowther, who he says instilled in him values that make him the man he is today, such as giving back, being a positive leader and role model and a good father to his daughter. | Photo by Joshua Campbell