HANOVER COUNTY, Va. (WRIC) — Hanover Fire-EMS Chief Jethro Piland has announced plans to retire after 33 years of service.

A spokesperson for the County said Piland began his career in public service as a teenager when he volunteered with the East Hanover Rescue Squad.

After graduating from the Virginia Military Institute, Piland joined Hanover Fire-EMS in 1997 and worked his way up the ranks, after which he was named Fire Chief in 2012.

Piland was recognized with a Hanover Fire-EMS Line of Duty Performance Award for helping to save the life of a man from a body of water during Tropical Storm Gaston in 2004.

Piland also received a Governor`s Virginia Fire Service Award for Excellence in Virginia Fire Service and a Belize National Fire Service Award.

He is currently Chair of Grace Christian School in Mechanicsville and is a Flight Paramedic with VCU Health.

Deputy Chief Christopher Anderson has been appointed to serve as Acting Chief, effective Nov. 1, while the County looks for the next Chief of Hanover Fire-EMS.