Prairie Township Fire Chief Chris Synder is stepping down to take over at a nearby department.

With "sincere respect" for the township and its residents, Snyder announced his resignation Sept. 25 at the trustees meeting.

Snyder's last day with Prairie Township will be Oct. 14. His resignation ends 35 years of service to the township.

"I started here as a firefighter in 1985, and I've had the pleasure of working with Prairie Township over those years," Snyder said. "It's been a fantastic journey. I can't think of anything I would have rather done, or a greater bunch of people to be associated with."

The township will hold a reception to honor Snyder at noon Oct. 23 at Station 241, 123 Inah Ave.

Snyder has been hired as the next chief of the Jefferson Township Fire Department in neighboring Madison County, where he said he first began as a volunteer in the junior fire program while in high school. The department covers Jefferson and Fairfield townships, including the village of West Jefferson.

Snyder was among the first fulltime firefighters hired by Jefferson Township (Madison County) in 1983 before coming to Prairie Township two years later. He worked his way up through the ranks, serving the last six years as Prairie's fire chief. Trustees anticipate naming Snyder's replacement sometime this month.