Cumberland Times-News

Latest news

November 21, 2013

Longtime fire chief honored by commissioners, issued citation

BARTON — A devoted volunteer firefighter, who served as chief of the Barton Volunteer Fire Rescue Company 19 for 33 years, was honored by Allegany County commissioners Thursday evening.

Wayne Robert Rounds served as chief from 1980-2012 and has been a member of the department since 1970.

Rounds is “one of the anchors” in the county’s volunteer fire service, said Richard L. DeVore, the county’s director of emergency services. “We’ve stood shoulder to shoulder in flooding events, coal accidents and lost ... a friend between us,” DeVore said. Commissioners asked Rounds to say a few words during the meeting.

“It’s been a learning experience,” Rounds said. At the time Rounds wanted to join the fire service, members had to be 21, so Rounds went into the Navy and learned about firefighting while in the service for four years. “I joined the fire department before I got a job,” Rounds said.

Companies everywhere need new members. “Volunteers are sorely needed,” Rounds said. While some incentives exist, the biggest one has nothing to do with tax deductions or money. “The biggest benefit I’ve received is that I’ve helped somebody,” Rounds said.

Rounds said the volunteer service will always be needed in counties like Allegany County.

“I don’t see how the county can pay ... it needs to be done through volunteers,” Rounds said. While the county does have some paid personnel, Rounds thinks the county’s finances wouldn’tallow for a full-time, paid, countywide staff.

“Thank you ... for being a role model,” said Allegany County Commission President Michael McKay.

Rounds is “well respected throughout the public safety community in this county and beyond,” said J. Robert Dick, the county’s public safety division chief.

Rounds helped prepare two generations of firefighters, including members of his own family.

Rounds was issued a citation, signed by all three Allegany County commissioners, to thank him for his service.

Allegany County Commissioners held their regular business meeting in Barton Thursday. The small Barton Town Hall was packed with well-wishers and Rounds’ family members, which include two sons serving in the Cumberland Police Department.

Because Barton is part of the Georges Creek Valley coal area, commisisoners invited Sen. George Edwards to discuss the importance of the coal industry to the area.

Edwards “fights to keep what’s important here in this valley,” said Commissioner Creade Brodie.

There are about 400 employees in the coal industry, Edwards said, but each of those jobs produces at least three related jobs, for a total of as many as 1,200 to 1,500 jobs in the region. “It’s a very important part of the economy,” Edwards said. Revenue from new mining operations are helping pay for a billion dollar cleanup of mines that existed before today’s environmental regulations, Edwards said, so there’s an environmental benefit as well. The high-quality coal produced here has good export value, Edwards said.

“We have a good market ... most of the new mining will be underground,” Edwards said, mentioning a recent classified ad seeking underground miners for a mine in Garrett County. “The wages are good; the benefits are good,” he said.

All Maryland coal production is in Allegany and Garrett counties.

Commisisoners also presented an Allegany County flag to the mayor of Barton, Daniel A. Colmer. Other members of the town government were also at the meeting.

Matthew Bieniek can be contacted at

Text Only
Latest news
  • EversolCody004.jpg Cody Eversole named Kelley Award winner

    KEYSER, W.Va. — Keyser High School senior Cody Eversole was named this year’s J. Edward Kelley Award winner during a ceremony Wednesday morning at Potomac State College.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • DSC_0464.JPG Cranes set up to remove overturned fuel tanker in Oakland

    OAKLAND — Two large cranes were being set up early Wednesday afternoon in downtown Oakland to remove a fuel tanker that overturned several hours earlier and forced evacuation of the business district.

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Students support renovation of Southern Middle School

    OAKLAND — Students from both Southern and Northern middle schools presented a list of reasons why Southern Middle needs to be renovated during the Garrett County Commission meeting Tuesday.

    April 16, 2014

  • Oakland business district evacuated after tanker overturns

    OAKLAND — The town of Oakland business district was evacuated Wednesday when a tanker carrying 10,000 gallons of liquid propane overturned at Oak and Third streets at about 9:35 a.m., according to Garrett County officials.

    April 16, 2014

  • Fuel tanker overturned in Oakland; evacuation underway

    OAKLAND — A tanker carrying a load of propane reportedly overturned Wednesday morning in the town of Oakland, forcing an evacuation of the area, according to Garrett County officials.

    April 16, 2014

  • 10 things to know for today

    Your daily look at late-breaking news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about today:

    April 16, 2014

  • West Virginia DMV expanding online services

    CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) — The West Virginia Division of Motor Vehicles is widening its online service offerings.
    West Virginians now have the option to renew their vehicle registration and request a duplicate registration card online.

    April 16, 2014

  • Cherry blossoms boost Metro ridership

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Metro says good weather and the cherry blossoms’ peak bloom contributed to high ridership over the weekend.

    April 15, 2014

  • Bills to facilitate prison guard investigations

    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — The governor has signed a series of bills aimed at preventing another corruption scandal like the Black Guerrilla Family case at the Baltimore Jail.

    April 15, 2014

  • Student charged at Mineral County Vo-Tech

    KEYSER, W.Va. — Keyser Police responded to the Mineral County Vocational Technical Center on Monday at 10:46 a.m. for an incident in which a 21-year-old student was allegedly thrown into a wall by a 17-year-old student.

    April 15, 2014

Must Read
House Ads
NDN Video
NDN Video