CORVALLIS, Ore. — As the fire ladder climbed higher and higher in the sky Friday afternoon, 10-year-old Regan Maasdam’s eyes got wider and wider.
“Her eyeballs got huge,” said Corvallis firefighter Tom Porter, who accompanied Regan and her mom, Shari Maasdam, in the bucket. He stopped the ladder at 90 feet in the air, overlooking Corvallis and the mid-valley. “Going up high,” Regan said, was one of the best parts of being named Fire Chief For a Day.
Her classmates saw her off Friday morning, when a fire engine picked her up at Adams Elementary School — and the VIP treatment continued from there. As this year’s winner of an annual essay contest hosted by the Corvallis Fire Department, Regan met with Division Chief Doug Baily and Mayor Julie Manning, ate pizza with firefighters in the downtown station, toured the station and gained a little professional development in her new role as fire chief.