911 dispatcher retires after over 30 years

PHILIP A. HOLMES/Sun-Gazette After 34 years on the job, 911 veteran dispatcher James Pfleegor II has signed off at the county’s Department of Public Safety. Respected throughout the county for his dedication and service, Pfleegor, who has also been the Nisbet fire chief for many years, said “I’ve had the best job in the world.”

Long-time fire and police dispatcher James Pfleegor II retired last week as a telecommunicator after 34 years of service with the Lycoming County Department of Public Safety.

“Jim has been an asset to this department. We have been through so many changes over the years, and Jim always did whatever it took to keep up,” Sandy Holdren, the department’s deputy director, said.

Pfleegor’s former supervisor, Scott Konkle, who has been with the department for 33 years, said Pfleegor has been “dedicated and committed to helping people and serving the community” all his life.

“Jim and I worked together for more than 30 years,” said Konkle, communications specialist and 911 project manager.

“He has always been very professional,” Konkle said.

“I’ve always loved helping people, taking the calls, and every day here was different,” Pfleegor said as he reflected on his years of service and his career as a dispatcher.

“One of the biggest things I’ll never forget was the Flood of ’96

(1996); all the people calling for help and there was nothing we could do for them. It was unreal,” Pfleegor recalled.

Over the years, there were bad calls, good calls, bad days and good days, Pfleegor said, adding that dispatchers, with every call, are on the frontlines of making a difference in people’s lives.

“So many good things happened. I wouldn’t change a thing,” he said.

“I loved everyone I worked with. They are a great group of very dedicated workers,” Pfleegor said.

“I had the best job in the world,” he said.

John Yingling, director of the county’s Department of Public Safety, said Pfleegor’s dedication and service extends well behind the walls of the 911 Center.

“He is the complete package for service and commitment,” he said.

A firefighter for the Nisbet Volunteer Fire Co. since his early teens, Pfleegor has been the company’s fire chief since 1990. He also has served as volunteer emergency management agency coordinator for Susquehanna Township since 1985.

In his remarks when he signed off for the last time on the air, Pfleegor said “My public safety career all started because of my father who was a PCO (police communication officer) at the state police barracks.” His father, James Pfleegor, was a police dispatcher for many years at the Montoursville barracks.

“To all my public safety family: fire, police, EMS (emergency medical services), EMA (emergency management agency) and co-workers, I thank you from the bottom of my heart for the best career anyone could ever ask for. The last think I would like to say is for everyone to be safe out there in an ever-changing world,” Pfleegor said.