Bourne Fire Chief Norman P. Sylvester has announced he will retire from the Bourne Fire Department in July.
In his resignation letter to Bourne Town Administrator Thomas M. Guerino, Chief Sylvester said he will retire effective July 5.
Chief Sylvester was hired by the town in February 2015. Prior to Bourne, he was a lieutenant and fire prevention officer in the Hyannis Fire Department. He began his career as a call firefighter in Wareham in 1982, and moved to the Hyannis department in 1993.
The chief has a bachelor’s degree in fire science from Anna Maria College in Paxton. He is a state-certified paramedic, state and nationally certified fire inspector, and worked as a hazardous materials program co-ordinator at the Barnstable County Fire Academy.
In his resignation letter, the chief cited several of his accomplishments at the department, including hiring the town’s first assistant fire chief, moving the main station from Buzzards Bay to a building in Sagamore Beach, which is compliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act, starting the search process for a new south side fire station, and renegotiating a new four-year contract with firefighters union, Local 1717.
While praising his firefighters by writing, “I couldn’t be any prouder to have such a dedicated group of members,” he also sent a mixed message in his letter, suggesting a climate of selfishness in the department has made it an “extremely difficult time at BFD.”
Chief Sylvester was unavailable to further explain his criticism.