Back in 2009 on Sunday, June 28, the Consumer Energy Solutions building caught fire and was destroyed. There were 47 firefighters from Station 45 in Clearwater on the scene to save the day. No one was injured in the fire; however, one firefighter fell through the roof late in the afternoon. He was examined and released and was doing fine.

Emotions run high during an experience like this and foremost on the 150 employees’ minds who were standing there watching the building go up in flames was, “Oh my gosh! What will we do for work?” Most thought that was it.

But CEO Pat Clouden was not going to let that happen. He and his execs had operations up and running literally in 2 days. No one lost their job.

Every year since then we have had a “We Survived the Fire!” celebration coinciding with a celebration of Independence Day. We normally have a huge barbeque and invite our friends including the firefighters from Station 45. This year we ordered in. And 16 firefighters from Station 45 showed up for lunch—featuring Smokey Bones famous barbeque chicken and ribs with all the fixins.

We made a special presentation to Station 45’s District Commander Williams, thanking him and all firefighters for the heroic work they did and continue to always be willing to do.

Watch the video here of that presentation where our CEO, Pat Clouden, tells what it was like that day in 2009 when the building was destroyed by fire and presents a commemoration of the day to District Commander Williams.

 

Lunch was enjoyed by all—CES employees and our friends from Station 45. We celebrated together the survival of our company, the superhero efforts of our firefighters, and the freedoms we celebrate with Independence Day.