TWIN FALLS, Idaho (KLIX) – Hard work, laughter, camaraderie, excellent supervisors and peers – memories.  These are just some of the words to describe Ron Clark’s 40-year career with the Twin Falls Fire Department. Clark, current fire chief of the department, is set to retire on July 29.

He leaves his career knowing he’s done his best and, over the years, has garnered enough memories to last another 40 years and then some.

“I’ve only been with Twin Falls,” he said, explaining why he never ventured outside the area. “I suppose I can’t think of a better employer than the city of Twin Falls and the people it employs, particularly the fire department of which I’ve been a part of for so many years.”

Clark said a city manager named Tom Courtney took a chance on him, recruiting him to the department. The city council approved the appointment, setting in motion a career that spanned more than four decades. It started on Feb. 1, 1976. He was made fire chief 22 years later, on May 1, 1998.

“For a boy who grew up in Hollister and who made it to the Twin Falls Fire Department, that was a humongous happening in my life,” he said. “I’ve been very fortunate, lucky and appreciative of what the city has given me.”

He is excited about the next chapter in his life. One of the first things on his list is to take a trip with his two daughters, Holly and Melissa, to Alaska. After that, he looks forward to spending time relaxing at home, doing nothing if he feels so inclined, and not having to chase fire calls or do paperwork.

It’s a retirement he believes he’s earned, no doubt.

He’s always tried to measure up to a goal he set for himself years ago – “to do the best I could,” he said. “I’ve done that. I intend to walk out with my head held up and not look back.”