Behind the Badge: Chief Brian Nightlinger

By Anthony Antoine |

Published 07/08 2014 02:21PM

Updated 06/16 2015 03:04PM

URBANA -- He's the person responsible for the city's fire department. Getting the title of "chief" took a lot of hard work. WCIA-3's Anthony Antoine introduces Chief Brian Nightlinger, the man Behind the Badge.

Since the age of 17, Brian Nightlinger knew he wanted to be a firefighter. He started as a volunteer in Catlin and worked his way up the ranks.

He has seven kids of his own and sees the importance of being a role model. For the past two years, he's mentored a young man from King Elementary School. His mentee is making positive strides and Nightlinger benefits as well.

"When I go to see my mentee in the middle of the day, it's near lunchtime, so it's in the center of my day and, no matter how bad my day goes, when I go to the school and mentor him, my day gets a lot better."

Nightlinger says seeing his mentee smile is worth the time they spend together. He also mentors firefighters and he's happy to see them advance in their careers.

Nightlinger says a fire is usually the worst day in a victim's life. Helping them get through it is what he loves most about his job.

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