Today is Jack Babb's last day as Payson Fire Marshal.
Babb has taken a job as Assistant Fire Chief and Fire Marshal in Show Low.
"It's the right thing for my family and I to do at this time," Babb said. He would not elaborate on the reason for his departure.
Babb has been Payson's fire marshal since January of 1999.
"It's been a learning experience and I have worked with a lot of really good people," Babb said. "I'd say overall it's been a good experience."
Denis LaBonte, owner of Aztec Alarm, said it's unfortunate that the town is losing Babb.
"I've been in the fire business for about 25 years and I deal with fire marshals regularly at the state and local levels," LaBonte said. "Jack is by far the best fire marshal I've dealt with in 25 years. The town needs to realize that they've just lost their best ... by far the best."
Bruce VanCamp, a Payson firefighter for many years, said Babb brought Payson up to modern standards.
"Jack has probably done more to improve fire safety in our community than anyone I know," VanCamp said.
VanCamp's son, Matt, a detective with the Payson Police Department, agreed.
"Jack brought Payson into the 21st century as far as fire safety," he said.
Payson Fire Chief Marty deMasi said Babb brought a lot of professionalism to the office of fire marshal.
"He's been very good at public education and that's been most helpful," deMasi said. "I hate to see him go. He's done a great job."