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  • CCN - Columbus County News

Gore Named Interim Lake Chief

Updated: Dec 19, 2022

Chief Jerry Gore is stepping out of retirement to serve as Interim Chief at Lake Waccamaw Fire and Rescue department.

The decision comes after the Brandy Nance submitted her resignation last week. Nance was the first female to take the leadership role on a fire department in Columbus County. Gore retired in 2021 after 15 years with Lake Waccamaw Fire. He was named chief in 2013, when the department was in disarray after the departure of a numbest of members, the split with Lake Waccamaw Rescue Auxiliary, and a voluntary shut down by the town. Gore rebuilt the LWFD, and led the station as it rebuilt its ranks and brought the fire rating from a 9 -- nearly the lowest ranking of the state fire marshal's office -- to a 4. Public Works Director Robert Bailey, an assistant chief with the station, also submitted his resignation Wednesday.

The resignations came weeks before the town was set to start its own EMS service through the fire department Jan. 1. The county is revamping emergency medical response across Columbus, and the LWFD was set to replace Lake Waccamaw Auxiliary as EMS provider for the district. The county cancelled the Auxiliary's contract last summer after a highly-publicized incident where its chief, Shannon Worrell, was caught on video making racist and homophobic remarks at a Whiteville restaurant.

Town Clerk Meredith Parker said in a statement from the town that Gore plans to get the new EMS program operational.

"We are excited to have him back to save our town once again," the statement said.

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