HOMETOWN HERO: Eric Graham - WVVA TV Bluefield Beckley WV News, Weather and Sports



It is not uncommon to find Eric Graham around a fire engine he's been around them since he was a teen.

“I found out that I could start at 16 and at 16 I put my app in,” said Feiss.

Graham joined the Northfork Volunteer Fire Department as a teen but battling blazes wasn't his first fight, it was battling leukemia at the age of 10.

“I was a cancer survivor. One of the things that the local fire department in Charleston when I was in the hospital done. They would come out and do fire safety and talk to the kids.”

Graham says even at ten he saw a respect and brotherhood between the men who run into fires when others are running away.

“Everybody here is a second family,” said Graham.

“You know that you're going to help the person in need. Whether you know them or not. It's hard to explain this is definitely a profession you have to have a love for. You sort of find out real quick if you're cut out for it or not.”

In the decade he's been with the department. He's held many positions and at 26 he's one of our area's youngest fire chiefs.

“It was actually a little scary at first. It was a lot to take on. I felt that it would be a little overwhelming but I've been pretty good at it.”

Not only is he good at it but he's making sure the same encouragement he received is being passed down to the next generation

There's been a few of them get certified as fire fighters encourage anyone who thinks they'd like to be a fire men to come try it. Like i said it was one of the best things I've ever done in my life.”

Preserving throughout life's challenges and encouraging others is what makes Fire Chief Eric Graham a Hometown Hero.

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