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Volunteer celebrates 60 years with fire company in Mifflinburg

"Pappy Max" Zeller has been active with the Mifflinburg Hose Company for six decades.

MIFFLINBURG, Pa. — The Mifflinburg Hose Company in Union County is made up of volunteers of all ages. But unlike many departments, one of those volunteers has been an active member for 60 years — Max Zeller, or as his friends call him, Pappy Max.

"My father was a firefighter, and because of that, I got into it," Pappy Max said.

Pappy Max is 81 and a lifelong Mifflinburg resident. He joined the Mifflinburg Hose Company in 1962 and has done many different jobs, including assistant fire chief. He currently works with the department's fire police.

"I just enjoy it. It's like a big family around here. We have a good time. It's something I enjoy, and I don't want to give it up yet," Pappy Max said.

Pappy Max has seen a lot of changes over the years.

"We didn't use to have air packs when I first joined. Now we have air packs and everything," Pappy Max said.

Mifflinburg Hose Company President Chuck Klose calls Pappy Max an instrumental part of the fire company.

"Just a magnitude of things he was responsible for that we'll probably have to hire three people to replace him when he decides not to do this anymore," Klose said.

Pappy Max says the fire company keeps him young.

"It's just something I like to do. As long as I can do it, I'm going to keep doing it because I don't want to give it up," Pappy Max said.

Pappy Max says he responds to as many calls as he can and will continue to do so for as long as he is able.

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