Columbus swears in six new firefighters

The Columbus Fire Department is now up to full staffing after the swearing in of six new firefighters Tuesday morning by Mayor Jim Lienhoop.

According to the fire department, the new firefighters fill vacancies left by recent retirements and transfers. Their hiring brings the the department back to its full staffing of 95 sworn firefighters.

The new firefighters are:

  • Wyatt Barkes of Columbus who serves with Columbus Township Fire and Rescue and works as a Columbus Regional Hospital medic. Barkes is a 2016 graduate of Columbus North High School and a 2020 graduate of Western Governors University with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business.  In addition to an EMT certification, Barkes is certified as a Rope Rescue Technician, Swift Water Rescue Technician and Firefighter I & II certified.
  • Christopher Moon of Elizabethtown who is a member of the Elizabethtown Volunteer Fire Department and works part-time at Columbus Township Fire and Rescue. Moon is a 2011 graduate of Columbus East High School. Moon is an Emergency Medical Technician and Firefighter I & II certified.
  • Daniel Pennington of St. Paul who served as a volunteer Firefighter for the St. Paul, Indiana Fire Department as well as working with with Decatur County EMS, Edinburgh Fire Department and Franciscan EMS Shelbyville. Pennington is a 2008 graduate of Shelbyville High School and a 2012 graduate of Lincoln College of Technology with an Associate’s Degree in Diesel Management. Pennington previously served in the United States Army and was deployed to Iraq from 2009-2010. Pennington served in the US Army Reserves from 2011-2014. Pennington is an EMT and Firefighter I & II certified and he is currently enrolled in a paramedic licensure program through Franciscan Health.
  • Mitchel Tuttle of Columbus who worked as a police officer with the Greensburg Police Department. Tuttle is a 2009 graduate of Greensburg High School and studied Criminal Justice at Anderson University. Tuttle will be enrolled in a Firefighter I & II course as well as an EMT course.
  • Patrick Volland of Columbus who is a member of the Southwest Volunteer Fire Department and works part-time for Columbus Township Fire and Rescue. Volland is a 2013 graduate of Columbus East High School. He is Firefighter I certified. Volland will enroll in a Firefighter II course and will be required to obtain an EMT certification.
  • Nickolas Zickler of Greenwood who works for the Harrison Township Fire Department and works part-time for the Whiteland Fire Department. Zickler is a 2019 graduate of New Palestine High School and a 2022 graduate of Ivy Tech Community College with an Associate’s Degree in Fire Science. Zickler is a nationally registered Emergency Medical Technician and is also Firefighter I & II certified.

All firefighters will now undergo a department orientation training program. At the completion of all training requirements, each firefighter will receive a station and shift assignment.

Six new firefighters were sworn in Tuesday by Mayor Jim Lienhoop. Left to Right: Chief Andy Lay, Nickolas Zickler, Patrick Volland, Mitchel Tuttle, Daniel Pennington, Christopher Moon, Wyatt Barkes, Lienhoop. Photo courtesy of Columbus Fire Department.