Mayor Shane McFarland, City Council, Murfreesboro Fire & Rescue, Murfreesboro Police, and several other friends and family members of Vice Mayor Doug Young gathered at the site of the former Franklin Heights Housing Complex Tuesday, for a groundbreaking ceremony of the “Doug Young Public Safety Training Facility.”
Mayor McFarland addressed the large crowd and spoke of Vice Mayor Young’s long-time advocacy of this training facility. He then mentioned his recent trip to New York and the tour that he took of the 9/11 Museum. He saw many images and reminders of service providers who lost their lives, and in reflection, it made him think of the “countless lives the facility will save by the number of men and women working on their crafts to protect the citizens of Murfreesboro.”
Fire Rescue Chief Mark Foulks discussed some of the features of the facility, including five current buildings that will remain on site for training, a drill tower, and driving pad. Foulks remarked that the site has provided amazing training opportunities already, as several hundred Firefighters from across the nation used the facility in October during Firehouse Expo, a national training conference.
Police Chief Karl Durr expressed his appreciation for City Council’s support of law enforcement and fire and rescue. Durr spoke of Council’s vision of where they want first responders to go in the future and said, “They realize the way to get there is through training.”
City Manager Rob Lyons noted that in Young’s 13 years on the Council, he has always been a major proponent of education and public safety. “This facility combines both of the core values Doug holds so close.”
Vice Mayor Young was presented with a plaque from the City commemorating the naming of the facility. He also received a hard hat and badge from Murfreesboro Police Department and a leather helmet with personalized shield from Murfreesboro Fire & Rescue.
Young, very humbled by the honor, simply stated, “What I’m mostly proud of is 3 years… 5 years… 10 years from now, we can look back and say, ‘We’ve trained a lot of good people…’ and training saves lives.”
The groundbreaking closed with City Manager Lyons, Mayor McFarland, Vice Mayor Young, Councilmembers Rick Lalance, Madelyn Scales-Harris, Bill Shacklett, and Eddie Smotherman, and Chief Durr, Chief Foulks, and Deputy Chief Toombs “tossing the ceremonial dirt.”
More info on the Training Center:
The facility, which will provide a safe place for training for local public safety agencies, has been designed to minimally impact the surrounding community.
Features of the facility:
• Classroom and Administration building (Classroom based training, including but not limited to an Emergency Medical Services Lab)
• Storage building for equipment
• Drill Tower for training on search and rescue, rappelling, confined space rescue, and other tactical exercises
• Burn module for Class A* Burns
• Five buildings will remain in place along the back of the property for various practical training activities
• Simulated streetscape for motor vehicle accidents, traffic stops, etc.
• Outdoor classroom, kitchen, restroom facility
• K-9 training area
• Firefighting props (car, dumpster, tank, etc.)
• Physical fitness/obstacle course
• Driving pad
The facility will NOT have a firing range and will have landscaping and other buffers in place around the perimeter for the least amount of impact to the residential areas.
Bio for Vice Mayor Doug Young:
Vice Mayor Young has been a fixture on Murfreesboro’s City Council since 2002. He is the owner of City Tile and Floor Covering in Murfreesboro. Young is a member of the Rutherford County Chamber of Commerce and the Blue Raider Athletic Association. His professional memberships include the National Federation of Independent Businesses, Middle Tennessee Floor Covering Association and World Floor Covering Association. Young is a member of the Main Street Board of Directors and was named its 2012 Business Person of the Year.
Young previously served on the Board of Directors for the MTSU Alumni Association, Rutherford County Chamber of Commerce, Tennessee Municipal League and as trustee for the MTSU Foundation. He is a graduate and past board member of Leadership Rutherford and a graduate of the Citizens Police and Fire Academies. Young is a past member of the Regional Transportation Authority and Murfreesboro Jaycees. He served as an active duty U.S. Army officer in Infantry and Military Intelligence.
Young is an Elder at First Presbyterian Church in Murfreesboro. He and his wife of 45 years Susan, have three children and four grandchildren.