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Covington Fire Chief resigns
McNeil a former Rockdale director
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Covington Fire Department Chief John McNeil, a former director of Rockdale's emergency services, turned in his letter of resignation to Covington City Manager Leigh Anne Knight Monday, citing personal reasons for leaving.

“We wish him the best,” Knight said at Tuesday’s city council meeting. “He has been a great asset to the city. He’s truly going to be missed.”

A date has yet to be set for McNeil’s resignation, Knight said.

McNeil was named Covington’s fire chief in June 2011 after serving as a private consultant with Rhodes Consultants. He was Director of Emergency Services for Rockdale County from May 2009-July 2010.

In his time as Covington’s chief, McNeil helped facilitate the entire department becoming certified as emergency medical technicians, leading to two confirm saves recently, according to Councilman Chris Smith.

“He’s a great man,” Covington Mayor Ronnie Johnston said. “He set a great example. He will be missed.”

McNeil was chosen by city manager Steve Horton in 2011, after 28 years with the Atlanta Fire-Rescue Department.

“John is obviously highly qualified … we were all very impressed with him and what we believed that he can bring to the city of Covington to capture where we are and take us further down the road in fire services and public safety,” Horton told the Covington City Council upon hiring McNeil.