Golden Valley Fire Department Relief Association > Recognition > Retirees


Each year, some of our members choose to retire after various years of services. Either long or short, we take this opportunity to recognize them as a group and celebrate their time with the organization. Below you’ll read about the latest retirees and their selfless service to the community of Golden Valley.

Chris Gemlo
When Chris started his fire career Bill Clinton was president, Microsoft launched Windows 95, and Michael Jordan came out of retirement. During his 27-years, Chris spent his entire time at GVFD’s station one and 14 of those years as the Golden Valley Fire Relief Association treasurer.

“Chris has always had a great sense of humor,” said fellow firefighter, Matt Preston. “What would you expect from a guy that grows ginormous pumpkins, builds an outdoor bar from ice, and pulls a stuffed cat out of his turnout coat whenever he climbs the ladder?”

Chris is a full-time real estate agent, investor, and property manager, along with an avid canoeist and has a mustache that would make Tom Selleck blush. The GVFRA would like to thank Chris’ wife, Lisa, and their sons, Jake and Pete for sharing him with us for all these years.


Eric Boe
With 13 years of service on the fire department, Eric Boe ore a ton of hats…er, helmets. Eric served as a firefighter, lieutenant, captain and chief from 2009 to 2022 at station one and across the department.

“Eric would do anything for you at any time,” said station one responder, Curtis Smith. “He’s pulled my car out of a ditch, fixed my garage door after a call, and pulled me out of many muddy situations. He’ll drop everything and comes to help – that’s why he’s the prototypical firefighter”

Eric works for Reynolds Brands by day and is now a “new” firefighter with Big Lake Fire Department by night. You can find him spending a lot more time snowmobiling since his daughters don’t have as many dance competitions. He’ll always be a full-time husband and father to his three girls, wife Lisa and daughters Sydney and Haley.


Dom Guzman
Although Dom will continue with the Golden Valley Fire Department as a full-time, assistant fire chief – we won’t lose his great leadership and hilarious wit. Dom served from 2013 to 2023 as a firefighter, lieutenant, and captain at station one before putting on the white helmet.

“Dom is your classic firefighter: He loves smoking meat, he’s a bit of a pyro (but only within the limits of a legal rec fire), and he’s 100% competitive,” said Lieutenant 11, Jen Chen. “He may not be the best solo canoeist, but you’d better bet he’ll give it his all trying.”

Since retiring from being a grade schoolteacher and not responding to late night pages, Dom has more time to spend in the Boundary Waters Canoe Area, perfecting his truck (dotingly named Taco) and finding new adventures with his wife Jessica and their three sons, Tyler, Jaxson, and Grayson.