Matt Care Springfield fire

Matt Carey, 37, is sworn in as Springfield-Ontario Latter 23's new fire chief. Carey being sworn in by Don Staiger, retired fire chief of Mount Gilead Fire Department was Carey's first chief. Carey grew up in Mount Gilead.

SPRINGFIELD TWP. -- Matthew Carey's swearing-in was more than just about his new appointment as the fire chief of the Springfield-Ontario Fire Department, it was a homecoming celebration.

Carey, 37, said he took the new job to be closer to his hometown of Mount Gilead, but was also impressed by his new staff.

"It's amazing. there are a lot of good people here. Where I was at and where I came from -- I grew up close to here," the new Chief said. "I moved down south and was down there for about 12 years and before I moved back up here, I wanted to make sure this was a great place to be at and the (Springfield Township) Trustees told me there are good people and there are."

Springfield fire swear-in

Carey is sworn in by Don Staiger surrounded by his children.

Carey's fire fighting career began at the Mount Giliaed Fire department where he worked with his father, Al, and two brothers, Mark and Mike.

"There were a lot of us, the three of us on the same truck," Carey said with a grin. 

After leaving his hometown department in 2010, he took a job as chief at the Monroe Township Fire Department, in Claremont County just outside of Cincinnati, he said.

"It's nice to be closer to home and be around my family," he said.

One of the perks of being home was being sworn in to the new appointment by his very first fire chief, Don Staiger.

"I'm very impressed of how far he has come," Staiger said, addressing the audience of fire fighters and Carey family members.

Chairmen of the Springfield Township Trustees, Bob Currens said he and the community are excited to have a much of such character take the helm. 

"We're glad and excited about having Matt on board," Currens said. "I spoke with all of his bosses down south and the more we get to know him, the more we get to know him, the more we like him."

Though his swearing-in was Monday, Carey's first day as chief was June 1. 

He said the department has been busy so far and there is a lot of work he has to do in order to get caught up.

One of his main focuses he said is staffing.

"We need more fire fighters," he said. "I'll be working to get more."

Staff Reporter

Noah Jones is host to The Open Mic Podcast -- available on Apple Podcasts! He is the crime, education and music reporter for Richland Source. He is a native of St. Louis, Missouri and a giant Cardinals fan.

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