Name: John Manning
Hometown: Grew up in Winthrop, Mass.; Marlborough resident since 1978
Family: Wife of 43 years, Phylis Manning; daughter Ryann Manning, 39; sons Greg Manning, 37, and Brendan Manning, 35; granddaughter Liliana, 3½
Occupation: Marlborough fire chief and CEO of Southwestern Community Services in Keene
Education: Bachelor of Science in accounting from University of Massachusetts Amherst, 1976
Hobbies: Spending time with family, traveling and collecting Hard Rock Café pins
Question: How did you get into firefighting?
Answer: “When I went away to UMass — UMass is a very large campus, and if you had a car as a freshman, you had to park about a million miles away. But I found out that if you join the UMass fire department, you got a parking sticker that would allow you to park anywhere. So I joined the department, and I convinced my wife-to-be ... to let me use her car. So she let me use her car, and I could park it anywhere I want, so that’s why I joined the department.”
Question: What do you like most about your jobs at the fire station and at Southwestern Community Services?
Answer: “There’s a lot of challenges to it. If it’s a fire, what’s the best way to approach it? How do you attack it? If there’s a rescue, how are you going to get the person out of the vehicle? So there’s a lot of challenges that make you think and work out solutions to problems. And you’re helping your community. I like working (at Southwestern Community Services) because I really do believe that there are people out there who need assistance.”