Jessie J. McCoy, 98

Born March 24, 1923

Died July 28, 2021

William Carl Collins Jr., 91

Born July 11, 1930

Died July 27, 2021

James Haskell "Jim" Gibson, 80

Born August 6, 1940

Died July 27, 2021


Born October 18, 1978

Died July 27, 2021

Donald P. Hamilton, 100

Born August 5, 1920

Died July 27, 2021


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Tuesday, July 20, 2021, 9:11 AM

Muskogee Fire Chief Derrell Jones announced that he will retire at the end of July, after more than 36 years of service to the Muskogee community.

“It was my destiny to be a fireman, it has been unbelievable and I am truly grateful for God giving me the opportunity to show what I am capable of, and who I am as a person,” Jones said.

Jones’ career with the Muskogee Fire Department began in 1985 when he answered a help wanted ad looking for people to work at the fire station. His first job with the department was that of a firefighter, then a driver, before being promoted to captain, to training officer, to assistant fire marshal, to marshal and eventually to chief.

“My best memories of working with the Muskogee Fire Department are when I was hired by Fire Chief Marshal Beard in April of 1985 and then when I was hired by City Manager Mike Miller as fire chief in August of 2019,” Jones said.

Jones developed a passion for investigating fires. His curiosity was sparked as a child, after losing his grandmother in a house fire. The fire was ruled as arson, but a perpetrator was never identified or charged with the crime.

“Sometimes I was mentally and physically exhausted, but I loved digging through a fire scene in the wee hours of the morning and figuring out the origin and cause,” Jones added.

The city has begun the process of searching for someone to fill his shoes and hopes to have a new fire chief in place soon.

The city is planning a reception in his honor on Friday, July 30.