MIDDLEBORO — Representatives from the Town of Plympton, including its Board of Selectmen and Town Administrator, attended the Middleboro Selectmen meeting on December 3 to honor and bestow an accolade upon Middleboro Fire Chief Lance Benjamino. “We’ve come to thank you for your support at a time when our fire department was struggling. Chief Benjamino stepped in and provided a superb job. Your actions show what a good neighbor policy is,” said Jon Traynor, Jr., Chair of the Plympton Selectmen, to the entire Middleboro Board for authorizing this venture.

Plympton was without a fire chief, or even an interim fire chief, for much of this year. In desperate need, the town came to Middleboro officials with an unusual request: access to the town’s Fire Chief as a consultant and interim official.

“It shows that we all end up with the same problems, but with a slightly different dressing. We are so appreciative for you sharing your expertise,” said Marc Russo, Plympton Selectman.

Chief Benjamino divided his time between Middleboro and Plympton for the last four months while the town searched for a suitable replacement.

“Our Fire Department was in dire need of leadership. Instead of looking the other way, this town said ‘how can we help’,” said Elizabeth Dennehy, Town Administrator for Plympton.

“You helped us through a very difficult time. Now we’re poised with a successful future, and we’re eternally grateful,” said Christine Joy, Vice Chair of the Plympton Selectmen.

Chief Benjamino was present to receive his honorary plaque of appreciation. “I thank our Board for allowing me to do this. It’s been a challenge doing both jobs at the same time. Plympton is a nice town and they’re heading in the right direction,” said Benjamino.

The Town of Plympton eventually did find their new full-time Fire Chief in the form of former Lieutenant for the Middleboro Fire Department, Stephen Silva. Chief Silva, who was sworn in with Plympton on Thanksgiving week, had worked with the Middleboro Fire Department since 2002 and has more than 40 years of experience in fire and EMS services.

Chief Benjamino, while sad to see Silva go, expressed his gratitude and best wishes for Silva.

“I’m happy with the end result,” said Benjamino.