Fire Chief John Drsek at Maple Heights City Council Meeting

Maple Heights Fire Chief Retires After 31 Years

Cadet John Drsek joined the Maple Heights Fire Department on January 23, 1983. On August 1st, after 31 years of loyal service, Fire Chief John Drsek will complete his selfless career.

An Exciting and Ambitious Career

John Drsek was an ambitious greenhorn when he came to the department. Ever since the beginning, his dream was to one day be the fire chief. He earned a promotion to lieutenant in 1990 and was then promoted to Captain in 1999.  As he climbed into leadership, he proved his mettle in many ways.

John was one of the first paramedics in Maple Heights and that brought him into some interesting places. In his earlier years, he gave one patient enough time to set his house in order before passing –  he successfully resuscitated him in his home. On the other end of life, one of John’s greatest joys was bringing another life into the world. It was a truly exciting and terrifying experience. Nonetheless, it was a wonderful moment as he placed his own signature on the newborn’s birth certificate.

Achieving and Living His Dream

In 2010, John finally achieved his lifelong goal when he was promoted to Fire Chief. His hard work and commitment had paid off.

He was proud of his accomplishment but his work was not yet complete. In the years since becoming Chief, John labored to ensure the safety of his men through securing grants to purchase equipment. He bought ballistic vests for his firefighters and power-lift cots for the ambulances.

John also fostered an atmosphere of cooperation among neighboring communities. Maple Heights continues to share fire equipment and services with Bedford, Bedford Heights, Garfield Heights and Warrensville Heights. Furthermore, John has been instrumental in the development of the Southeast Regional Dispatch Center, one of his proudest achievements.

A Diamond in the Rough

Fire Chief John Drsek as Santa Claus greeting childrenFire Chief John Drsek was one of the most committed city officials in Maple. He would come to every council meeting. He would answer any question. He would respond to every text. John was approachable and honest.

He and his wife loved the City of Maple Heights so much that, every year, they would don their red velvet and snowy white costumes and deliver presents to children throughout the City for Christmas. As Santa and Ms. Claus, they brought cheer to many families, including my own.

John Drsek was our Fire Chief, but he also was our friend.

Best Wishes and May God Bless You.

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