Rescue Clear: Escambia Emergency Dispatcher Retires After 30 Years

August 10, 2019

A voice that has been on the other end of 911 in Escambia County for 30 years retired Friday afternoon.

William “Bill” Jordan has answered and dispatched thousands upon thousands of 911 calls in Escambia County.

His three decades of service was to come to an end with one last radio call. He turned to the microphone and paused. Then he turned his head way, laughed and turned back to the microphone.

“This is Escambia County Fire Rescue Communications Center, Pensacola, Florida. The following dispatcher is out of service. 2826 (his radio number). Clear, Rescue clear at at 16:57.”

He leaned back in his chair. “Alright,” he said with a sigh. Three decades were over. So he thought.

“Squad 3 Escambia.”

“Squad 3,” Bill answered.

“Godspeed.”

He stood up, walked away and then turned to look back at the dispatch desk.  And the radio calls kept coming from fire stations across the county.

“Ladder 13 Escambia.”

“Ladder 13,” he replied.

“Good luck. Thank you for your service.”

Engine 17. Ladder 13. Engine 14. The radio calls continued with best wishes.

“I really wasn’t expecting all this,” he said to those in the dispatch  center.

“1803 Escambia.”

“1803?”

“Thank you for you service. Enjoy your retirement sir.”

“901 Escambia.”

“All units standby,” Bill said. He looks at the dispatch computer. A structure fire call on Creighton Road was coming in.

“Let’s do it,” Bill said as he hit the dispatch tones that alerts fire stations needed for the call.  Like a ship’s captain at the helm, he settled into his chair, and soon begin to dispatch fire engines to the fire.

“….commercial structure fire,” Bill said as he went back work serving Escambia County’s citizens.

Pictured top: William “Bill” Jordan on his last shift, ending a 30-year career as an Escambia County dispatcher. Pictured inset: Bill reacts as he signs off the last time. Photos for NorthEscambia.com, click to enlarge.

Comments

24 Responses to “Rescue Clear: Escambia Emergency Dispatcher Retires After 30 Years”

  1. Anthony Capuito on August 12th, 2019 1:18 pm

    Congratulations Bill – I doubt you remember me from over 20yrs ago – worked with you, Paul, Mark, Anne, Elaine, David…Pete Jim Kelly…under Frank Hobbs in the mid 90s

  2. Michael Aaron on August 12th, 2019 5:57 am

    Bill,

    Thank you for being a great mentor and friend over the years. It all started at Ensley VFD when I was a Junior Firefighter, you took the time to explain things and share your knowledge. And again, as a part time 911 Dispatcher, it was always a pleasure working with you in the radio room. You were cool, calm and collective and very passionate about the job and one of the best fire dispatchers ever!!!

    Enjoy retirement Bill!!!

  3. Jeff Young on August 11th, 2019 7:18 am

    Congratulations Bill! Haven’t talked with you since the late 90’s but was pleased to see the news of your retirement now that I recently returned to town. Reach out via email if you’d like to catch up. Enjoy retirement!

  4. Cory on August 10th, 2019 9:58 pm

    Best wishes to you throughout your retirement. Many wonderful years serving our community, sir. Thank you for a job very well done.

  5. Scott M on August 10th, 2019 9:07 pm

    Congratulations on your retirement Bill. From your friends at Santa Rosa 911 it has always been a pleasure having you on the other end of the line.

    God bless you and your family as you start this new chapter in your life. You’re always welcome for a cup of coffee in our dispatch center.

  6. Buck C. on August 10th, 2019 7:03 pm

    Your demeanor and calm on the phone and on the radio were the standards I tried to attain and maintain throughout my years in dispatch. Thank you for setting the bar high. Enjoy your retirement – you’ve certainly earned it!

  7. Pete Bender on August 10th, 2019 6:33 pm

    A long and very successful career, thank you bill…

  8. Shana Holmes on August 10th, 2019 4:03 pm

    An amazing servant through many trials over the years. From fire department service to dispatch service he has always been an amazing asset to Pensacola. You have certainly earned a rest Bill. It is great to see you honored and loved.
    .love you, Shana

  9. Kay Moore on August 10th, 2019 4:03 pm

    I hope you have a relaxing, uneventful retirement! Well, let’s just say no BAD eventful stuff. Enjoy every moment of it. It has been a pleasure knowing you for the past 25 years. And thanks for all the days you made such a valiant effort to get me a few seconds to grab lunch. Thank you for your service! Hugs, my friend! K

  10. Suzie B on August 10th, 2019 2:32 pm

    Best wishes on your retirement. A voice that has calmed a saved many situations where a calm voice was needed. It’s a job that needs a special kind of person. Thanks to you and all dispatchers who handle frantic calls of all in need. Congratulations.

  11. Tim Moran on August 10th, 2019 2:16 pm

    Congratulations, Bill. I enjoyed working with you so very long ago. Enjoy the next chapter of your life and have fun!

  12. Bryan Caro on August 10th, 2019 1:19 pm

    The Man, The Myth, The Legend. Bill Jordan.
    Bill has provided a service to us for years and a mighty good one at that. It was always a pleasure to have him dispatch fires. His knowledge of the Fire Service served us well. His calm demeanor and understanding of the events taking place were reassuring. His uncanny knack for Escambia County geography was second to none. I will is his voice and his presence on the other end of the radio. I am sure he has trained others to be better than was because that’s what he wants, the best for those who serve Escambia citizens in the field. Thank you Bill for.your dedication and direction all these years! Godspeed and Happy Retirement Bill Jordan!

  13. A on August 10th, 2019 11:14 am

    It takes a very special kind of person to do this job. I learned this from Louise who has previously retired. Bill, thanks for being the voice of reason. Looks like you set quite an example. Proudly retire. Well done.

  14. TJ Smith on August 10th, 2019 11:14 am

    Congrats, Bill! much like Scott said, after 24+ years of hearing you as the “calm in the storm” on the other end of the radio I’m going to miss that. Best of luck in what is to come!

  15. Paul Williams on August 10th, 2019 11:10 am

    It has been a pleasure knowing Bill for over thirty years. Bill was the one that recruited me to the Ensley Volunteer Fire Department junior FF program and I considered a mentor. Later on after getting hired at dispatch Bill was again a mentor for me. Bill, thank you for 30 years of unparalleled courteous and professional service. Thank you for recruiting me into the fire department 33 years ago and most of all thank for your friendship and mentoring. I wish you a long, healthy and prosperous retirement.

  16. Magi on August 10th, 2019 9:53 am

    Great 30 years, Bill, proud to know you…peace out!!

  17. David Bardin with Escambia County Facilities Management on August 10th, 2019 9:23 am

    Bill, It has been an honor and a pleasure working with you my friend. Your professionalism and dedication are an attribute many will attempt to mimic. Enjoy your time of retirement.

  18. William B. on August 10th, 2019 9:03 am

    As a society, we focus on the political circus and the politicians that run it. Yet, it’s the countless public servants, factory workers, enlisted military and officers, healthcare professionals, police, firefighters, EMT’s, and all the other folks that work productively to help themselves and others on a day to day basis that make this country and our communities so great. #2826, thank you for your service! God bless and grant you peace in your retirement!

    William, thanks for publishing this.

  19. Nana on August 10th, 2019 8:51 am

    May God bless you with a long and healthy retirement! Enjoy it! You deserve it!

  20. Randi W on August 10th, 2019 8:35 am

    Bill it has been a pleasure working with you the last couple years. You have taught me a lot and I will forever be grateful for that! Listening to you dispatch with the steadfast, calm voice no matter the call, is the voice I try to be. You will be missed around this radio room and over the airwaves! Thank you for everything but most of all, thank you for being my mentor and friend! Enjoy the well deserved retirement. As one of the ECFR Lieutenant would say, Bill is “The Man, The Myth, The Legend”.

  21. Randi W on August 10th, 2019 8:32 am

    Bill it has been a pleasure working with you the last couple years. You have taught me a lot and I will forever be grateful for that! Listening to you dispatch with the steadfast, calm voice no matter the call, is the voice I try to be. You will be missed around this radio room and over the airwaves! Thank you for everything but most of all, thank you for being my mentor and friend! Enjoy the well deserved retirement.

  22. Scott Hunsucker on August 10th, 2019 8:25 am

    Bill,

    I hope you enjoy a well earned retirement! After 27.5 years of hearing your voice I am certain I will continue to hear your voice in my head for many years to come. You were always a calm sound in an often chaotic world and I appreciate that.

    I’m sure I’ll see you at Greek Fest this fall.

    Best of luck to you my friend.

    Scott

  23. mike on August 10th, 2019 4:24 am

    alright, great job 2826! enjoy your retirement! :)

  24. Kathy Pope on August 10th, 2019 3:09 am

    Enjoy your retirement Bill, you’ve earned it.





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