PHOENIX – Tempe’s first-ever woman firefighter, Gretchen Chalmers, has officially retired after 26 years of service.
Chalmers, known as “Mama Gretch” by peers, commemorated her retirement at the Tempe History Museum.
She was hired in 1993, and served as an engineer paramedic for the Tempe Fire Medical Rescue Department. Chalmers, 56, is a long-time athlete, and a competitor and winner in the World Police and Fire Games.
While Chalmers has been able to physically keep up with her male counterparts for 26 years, she felt it was time to say goodbye to her dream job.
Gretchen Chalmers retired alongside three of her peers with a combined 104 years of experience, according to Tempe Fire Medical Rescue Department’s Facebook page.