HIGH POINT, N.C. (WGHP) — Change is hard. For one High Point firefighter who’s transitioning into retirement after 30 years of service, knowing he has two sons to fill his shoes is making it a little easier.
Fire Station 12 Captain Kevin Hauser’s retirement ceremony was on Monday. What the captain is looking forward to most in his retirement is how his sons will carry on the Hauser name.
“Whenever the topic came up, I said ‘do whatever makes you happy,’” Captain Hauser recalled telling his kids years ago.
Lucky for him, two of his sons chose to follow in his footsteps.
“Tanner, the older of the two, came in one day and said ‘I think I want to go into the fire service,’” Captain Hauser explained.
For 21-year-old son Logan, it had always been second nature.
His first words were “probably fire truck,” Logan said.
That’s why their dad’s retirement is bittersweet.
“I feel like we definitely have some big shoes to fill. My dad has definitely made a name for himself here, starting from the bottom,” Logan said.
Logan, who’s still in firefighter training, remembers how special his first day on the job was because of his dad.
“My first day in rookie school, I walked down the steps. He looked at me and said, ‘hey, you look like me.’ It was kind of cool because when I was younger, I used to come down the steps in the morning and give him a hug bye, and he’d be coming here (to the fire station),” Logan said.
For 24-year-old Tanner, his unforgettable memory happened Monday on his father’s last shift. The two sat side by side riding in Engine One, which is where the Captain got his professional start and is now the station Tanner works out of.
“I’ve never gotten to actually work alongside him, especially this close and on the same truck,” Tanner explained.
“Being able to ride your last day and have your son behind you, that’s a pretty proud feeling,” Captain Hauser said.
As Hauser turns the page on this chapter of his life, his legacy will carry on through his sons
“It will be a little quieter I’m sure, which will be okay. But with that experience leaving, that’s something we’ll never get back,” Tanner said.
As for what’s next for the captain, he is going to continue selling firefighter equipment, which is the other job he’s held for 24 years.
He said it’s one way to stay connected to his fire brothers during retirement.