FALLBROOK – Fire Engineer Rick Moramarco retired from the North County Fire Protection District on Dec. 28 after 33 years of service. Moramarco started his career in firefighting with the then independent Rainbow Volunteer Fire Department in September 1975. He became a reserve firefighter with the then Fallbrook Fire Department in 1980 and was hired full-time in July 1987.
Moramarco also served as a trainer of new engineers and a proctor in their testing for the district and also worked at the Palomar College Fire Academy as an assistant instructor for training firefighter cadets twice a year since 1995.
He was presented with a fire bell trophy by Chief Bill Metcalf at the Dec. 10 meeting of the fire protection district board. The retirement of fire mechanic Gerry Austerman (11 years of service) was also acknowledged with this statement: “It is with fondness and thankfulness that the District commends these individuals for their dedication during their years of service. We thank them for their efforts on behalf of the community and for helping to make North County Fire Protection District the organization it has become. Staff wishes them both the best of luck in their future endeavors.”
A retirement BBQ lunch was held for Moramarco on Dec. 27 at Station 1 attended by family, friends and fellow firefighters. Capt. Randy Meers, representing the Fallbrook Firefighters Association, presented Moramarco with a plaque in honor of his retirement. Deputy Chief Ed Sprague then presented him with a shadow box containing the badges, patches and pins he wore during his years of service.
Moramarco took over as Chief of the Rainbow Volunteer Fire Department a year ago and will remain in that volunteer position for the time being.