The following eulogy, written by firemen that Chief Hartman led, is a wonderful testimony to the man he was.
Eulogy for Fire Chief Clarence Hartman
By His Fellow Firemen From Wexford
We the members of the Wexford Volunteer Fire Company are gathered here to pay our respects to our Chief and leader of the past 12 years- Clarence Hartman. It is difficult for us to express in words our true feelings for Clarence for he was not an ordinary man, but rather a man with strong character and wonderful personality. I believe that if the rest of us here today could have the choice of selecting for our children their character and personality that we would pattern them after Clarence Hartman.
For Clarence was always friendly, he got along well with everybody and had a great sense of humor. He had a perpetual smile that was contagious and when you talked to Clarence on any subject, you came away feeling a little better. Clarence liked people and people liked Clarence. He was a sincere, straightforward man who tried to please everybody and came as close to accomplishing that as anybody I know.
As for our Fire Chief for the last twelve years, Clarence has done a truly outstanding and remarkable job. He had a thorough knowledge of fire fighting equipment and how to use it. He was abreast of all the techniques of fighting fires and the dangers to occupants and firefighters alike. This knowledge was not attained by accident, but rather by hard work and study over the years. Chief Hartman gave freely of his own time to improve his skills for the betterment of the fire company and thus for the benefit of the community.
Chief Hartman was a believer in the need for a skilled firefighting force and instituted training programs for the men. He spent countless hours passing on his own knowledge to others and never lost his patience at even the most elementary question. But the best training technique he had was the example he set for the men. For Clarence was a doer who never asked anybody to do anything he himself would not do.
Chief Hartman contributed immeasurably to a mutual respect that exists between Wexford and nearby fire companies. For his sincere willingness to cooperate and assist others has been aided in developing a spirit de corps between companies.
Chief Hartman was a leader, and he was the kind of leader who led because he was needed and not because of any desire on his part for authority. Fireman followed his orders without questions for they were always fair, logical, and given with a purpose in mind. But even more than that, Chief Hartman’s orders were followed cheerfully because of the admiration, respect, and confidence that the men had in their chief-and in the twelve years he was chief he never let them down once.
Chief Hartman also served our fire company well from the administrative side. As a member of the Board of Directors. his candid opinions and good judgment were invaluable. He had an abundance of common sense and as in everything else he did, he could be depended on without fail to attend the monthly board meetings.
As Fire Chief, Clarence Hartman shouldered a tremendous responsibility which he willingly accepted. A responsibility that some of us may not realize until we consider that on the Chief’s judgment at a fire rests the decisions that affect the life or death of occupants and firefighters alike. Clarence accepted his responsibilities cheerfully and he leaves us with a legacy of responsibility to carry on where he left off. For Clarence will always be with us and always in our thoughts. Our deepest sympathy goes out to his wonderful wife Evelyn and the children, for we can little appreciate the tremendous loss they have suffered.
By J.S. Mayberry- President, Wexford Volunteer Fire Company
Presented at Brant’s Funeral Home, October 25, 1970