On April 4, 2018, VRFA Battalion Chief Rudy Peden signed off for the last time after 41 years of service. Of those 41 years, he spent 33 with VRFA. In June of 1985, he joined the Legacy Auburn Fire Department. Peden has served as Battalion Chief since his promotion in 1999.
Before beginning his career in fire service, Peden served two tours in Vietnam with the United States Army. On his first tour, he was a combat engineer and served on a Medevac helicopter as a door gunner in my second tour.
In 1976 Peden began his fire service career with the Tukwila Fire Department. Throughout his career he has had a wide range of roles, serving on the "Water Rescue Team, Technical Rescue Team, HazMat and Fire Investigation. Peden was also involved in Pre-Incident Planning, served as a CBT instructor and was the Battalion Chief of Training."
Over the course of his career, he received two letters of commendation and two meritorious unit citations. Peden was awarded as the 2017 VRFA Fire Officer of the Year in March of this year.
In addition to his work with fire services, Peden spent 11 years as a reserve King County Sheriff.
The Valley Professional Fire Fighters(Local 1352) shared that “[Chief] Peden has made a difference in countless lives, citizens and firefighters alike. He is a local legend and the kind of Battalion Chief that everyone wants to work for. As much as he will be missed, we are excited for BC Peden to start this next chapter in his life.”
Peden says he will miss the people, friendships, and bonds that have been made over the years. In his retirement, he plans to spend more time with his grandchildren and travel.