PARIS — Deputy Fire Chief Jon Longley assumed the duties of fire chief and fire warden at 2 p.m. Wednesday in the wake of longtime Fire Chief Brad Frost’s retirement, according to interim Town Manager Bill Guindon.

Board of Selectmen Chairman Mike Risica said Longley would serve “for a couple of weeks until we finalize an interim chief for a lengthy level.”

Guindon said in an email that selectmen and incoming Town Manager Vic Hodgkins, who begins work Tuesday, Sept. 6, would make a decision about the interim fire chief.

When asked if he would become the next fire chief, Longley previously said he could not serve as chief and fire instructor in Region 9 at the same time.

“I would being doing Paris, the (residents) and the Fire Department a complete disservice,” he said about the scenario.

Longley was appointed acting chief after an executive session by selectmen on Monday.

Frost’s retirement after 16 years at the helm began Wednesday at the same time Longley took over.

Frost, 77, had originally planned to continue working through fall, but cited lack of support from selectmen as a reason to retire early.

On Wednesday, Guindon sent an email asking people to thank Frost for his 53 years of service in the Fire Department. Guindon said in his own 40 years in the fire service, Frost is a man especially dedicated to protecting the community.

“Chief Frost is one who stands out as a servant, leadership and dedicated passionate community member,” Guindon wrote. “Chief Frost has demonstrated integrity to ensuring that the town’s best interest is a major item of focus.

“How many people do you know who are willing to sacrifice their time and talents, sometimes at the darkest hour to help keep their community safe?” he wrote. “Even in the midst of public scrutiny, little or no pay, Chief Frost never quit. Chief Frost realized that he was more than a fire chief but more importantly a community servant.”

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