By Andrew Mundhenk, Times-News:
Tryon Fire Department announced that Fire Chief James “Tank” Waters died unexpectedly at his home Tuesday.
The town sent out a statement shortly after Waters’ passing. He was named fire chief last July and had served the community for more than 25 years.
“Chief Waters poured his heart and soul into Polk County and its citizens for over 20 years,” Tryon Town Manager Zach Ollis said Wednesday. “We were blessed to have him as a chief, leader, friend and role model.
“Chief Waters proved himself to be a vital part of our team and we will forever remember his humor and love of life around the office.”
Waters joined the Tryon Fire Department as a volunteer in 2005, and transitioned to the position of career firefighter in 2012, before being promoted to assistant chief in 2014 and later chief.
The N.C. Office of State Fire Marshal posted on Facebook that Waters was a longtime public servant and a true leader in his community.
It states that State Fire Marshal Mike Causey and the Office of State Fire Marshal is working with the fire department and Waters’ family to classify his passing as a line of duty death.
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