June 15, 2011 —
Shohola fire chief Don Wall and fire department president Ken Yeaw were expelled from the company in a secret ballot vote during a regular company meeting on June 6.
Of the 15 who could validly vote, five supported Wall and Yeaw.
Yeaw was expelled because he would not present a letter of suspension of Wall earlier, which was the duty of the president of the company.
At the meeting, there was no presentation of evidence, no cross-examination and no defense allowed. The vote followed the recommendation by the fire company’s officers held earlier in the month that the two be expelled. Only one officer supported Wall.
“As far as I know, the reason for the expulsion was for conduct unbecoming of an officer,” said George Fluhr Jr., chairman of the Shohola Township Board and a life-time member of the department. Fluhr said that Wall was accused of misrepresenting the financial condition of the company by saying that the company was bankrupt while they had over $600,000 in the bank.
Wall was quoted as saying that no facts or evidence were ever presented to him.
“Dissatisfaction with Wall had been building over the last year,” Fluhr said. “The results were overwhelming.”
Fluhr couldn’t say for sure if the fact that Wall is the target of a grand jury investigation being currently conducted by the Pike County District Attorney, Ray Tonkin, had any impact on the matter.
Wall, who was present at the June 6 hearing, would comment only through his attorney, Andrew Bigda, who did not return phone calls. Yeaw also refused to answer questions by the press.
The acting chief of the company is Clint Malzahn and vice president Allen Cue is now president.