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In Memoriam and Gratitude
Watson C. Hubbard, the first full-time Chief of the Pleasant Prairie Fire Department, passed away on Friday, April 18, 2008, at the age of 76. Retired Fire Chief Hubbard had a long history of service to the public, including service to his country as a member of the U.S. Navy during the Korean Conflict. Watson Hubbard joined the Pleasant Prairie Fire Department as a volunteer in 1958 at the age of 26.

Twenty years later, in 1978, Mr. Hubbard was appointed as Pleasant Prairieís first full-time Fire Chief. This was the first such appointment of a Fire Chief in Pleasant Prairie, as prior to Chief Hubbardís appointment, fire chiefs in the town had been elected by a group of their peers. Watson Hubbard served as Fire Chief until his medical retirement in 1985.

During his time as Chief, Watson was a proponent of training, progress and interdepartmental cooperation. Chief Hubbard served as a president of the Kenosha County Fire Chiefís Association, as a member of the Wisconsin Fire Chiefís Association and as a member of the Wisconsin Firefighterís Association. He also served as an officer in the Kenosha County Waterfight Association, as a member of the Kenosha Technical College Fire Training Advisory Group, and as a member and officer of the Pleasant Prairie Firemenís Association.

In 1984, Chief Hubbard and the Silver Lake Fire Chief were the first to propose the formation of a MABAS Division within Kenosha County. MABAS is a well-defined network of area fire departments that provides for the orderly sharing of resources and personnel during emergency response situations. Chief Hubbard was also an advocate for Kenosha Countyís Emergency Medical Services, or EMS, program and its advancement to the EMT - Intermediate level, taking time to travel the State to plead its case. Chief Hubbard, himself, was a member of the first group of nationally registered EMTís in Pleasant Prairie that formed the towns first Rescue Squad.

Family sharing Chief Hubbardís passion for firefighting and emergency services include: his grandfather, a former Chief of the Kenosha Fire Department; his father, also a former member of Kenosha Fire; his daughter, trained as a 911 dispatcher; and his grandson, currently serving as a firefighter in Somers and Pleasant Prairie. Watsonís other passions included: owning and operating the Badger Cheese Market, hunting, fishing, woodworking, visiting his cabin in northern Wisconsin, and the Green Bay Packers.

The Village Board and staff would like to extend their deepest regrets to the surviving members of Chief Hubbardís family. They would also like to extend their most sincere gratitude to the late Chief, Watson Hubbard, for his years of service and dedication to the people of Pleasant Prairie and his constant commitment to enhancing the fire and rescue services provided by the department.

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