Otsego County Fire Department Remembers Fire Chief Dave Duffield

Otsego County is mourning the loss of their longtime fire chief after his death on Monday. He was well known for being the leader of the station and always knew what needed to be done.  

Assistant Fire Chief Chris Martin worked with him for 35 years. “He was a leader, the backbone of this department and he wDuffield Familyas somebody I looked up to in my career as a firefighter,” he said. 

Duffield was working on his house when he fell off a ladder and hit his head. He spent 10 days in the hospital before succumbing to his injuries. His death was a shock to the department. “Fire departments are a very strong family and Dave was in charge of that family,” said Martin. “He not only had his family, but he had this family here and he took care of us.” 

Chief Duffield started with the department 47 years ago, and he spent the last 13 as chief. Cpt. Tim Warren said Chief Duffield wasn’t just involved in the fire department. He was also very involved in the community. “He was in charge of the farmers market downtown,” he said. “He was a city treasurer for a while. I mean, it’s a big loss to this community because he was—he loved this community. He was involved in a lot.”

The department is looking at ways to keep Chief Duffield in their memories. “We’re going to look at some signage for this truck to get on there in remembrance of him,” said Martin. “It’s sort of a tradition around here. We’re going to retire his number and we’re going to remember him as our chief.” 

Chief Duffield is survived by his wife and five children, along with nine grandkids.