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Here to Serve

One of the more active people behind the scenes in emergency planning and fire-rescue services in the Colleton community is a volunteer, who is crossing county lines to help multiple agencies be at their best.
Mike Rohaus is a volunteer with Colleton County Fire-Rescue. Under this agency’s umbrella, he is serving the Colleton community as a manager of several area stations. He also is an operations chief for the EOC or Emergency Operations Center.
The EOC manages the day-to-day operations of fire-rescue, law enforcement, S.C. DOT and Colleton Medical Center during an emergency or natural disaster.
“I had been involved in emergency services since 1972 when I lived up North,” he said. “I’ve been with Colleton County Fire-Rescue since 2005 as a volunteer and I really enjoy it. I enjoy it immensely.”
At 65 years old, this Walterboro resident first moved to the Palmetto State more than three decades ago from New Jersey. A Pittsburg native, Rohaus said he came south after responding to an ad for employment within the Charleston Police Department.
He is now a captain overall Colleton County Fire-Rescue stations around Walterboro, and also serves as a volunteer manager in fire rescue’s Emergency Operations Center. A retired Charleston County deputy, Rohaus is also a former Fire Commissioner for the St. Paul’s Fire Department in nearby Charleston County.
“He is very active. He does a lot for the entire Colleton community and for CCFR,” said Barry McRoy, director and chief of Colleton County Fire-Rescue.
In addition to his hands-on helping of the emergency and fire station branches, Rohaus also serves as an assistant advisor for the Explorer Post. This is a part of the Colleton County Fire-Rescue department that encourages youth to learn about fire and rescue careers.
He has crossed into Charleston County with this role, also acting as a current senior advisor for the Charleston County Explorer’s Post.
In these roles, he said he helps to nurture upcoming youth who are interested in law enforcement and fire-rescue careers, he said.
“Working under Boy Scout guidelines, it’s training them and getting accolated to the fire service and seeing that they get trained, so when they turn 18, they can move straight into the role of an adult volunteer or into the career they have chosen, as a paid firefighter or law enforcement,” Rohaus said.
When asked about his commitment to Colleton County as a volunteer, he said volunteering with the CCRR is something that everyone should “investigate.”
“It’s very rewarding and it’s fun,” he said. “It’s something the county needs. We need a lot more than we have.”
According to him, there are about 125 volunteers countywide with CCFR. The agency is an all-encompassing one that covers the entire county, offering fire services, EMS/Rescue and emergency response and preparation.
“I like being a part of the community, wherever I’ve been,” he said. “I like being active in whatever I do.”

Heather Walters (1568 Posts)