For decades, Chuck Stewart of Elizabethtown has been the voice on the other end of the line for those facing emergencies. Stewart has served as a dispatcher for about 33 years, nearly 18 of which have been with the Kentucky State Police.

Stewart’s work with first responders began when he was a student at East Hardin High School. He said through a co-op program, he began working with Hardin County Emergency Medical Services. He then went on to serve as a volunteer firefighter with Central Hardin Fire Department.

In 1983, Stewart graduated from East Hardin and went on to receive training in telecommunications from the Kentucky Department of Criminal Justice Training in 1984 and was certified as an EMT in 1985.

Before beginning his role with KSP in 2003, Stewart dispatched for Hardin County Control for 15 years.

“It is a great job,” Stewart said. “Every day is different. You never know what type of call you are going to get. “

In his current role, Stewart said he serves as a link between first responders and the public. Specifically, he serves as a link between KSP and the Kentucky Department of Fish and Wildlife and residents of Hardin, LaRue, Nelson, Bullitt, Breckinridge, Meade, Grayson and Jefferson counties.

Stewart’s roles range from answering questions from the public to handling major incidents such as multi-vehicle accidents, train derailments, airplane crashes and crimes such as burglaries, assaults and homicides. He also is responsible for entering stolen items into the National Crime Information Center index, as well as wanted or missing people.

“The frequency and type of calls is unpredictable,” Stewart said. “…There really is not a typical day; every day is different with its own unique challenges.”

Joey Mattingly, telecommunications supervisor for KSP, said Stewart is truly dedicated to his work and is also a fun-loving person.

“No matter how difficult the situation we’re dealing with

at Post 04, Chuck is always there to lighten to mood,” Mattingly said.

In addition to his role at KSP, Stewart also has worked off-and-on with local business Skaggs Limousine and Transportation for about 26 years. In 2016, he began managing the limousine service for owner NeVelle Skaggs, booking and assigning limousine runs.

Through this role as a chauffeur, Stewart has had the opportunity to interact with several notable figures in the entertainment industry.

One notable encounter took place in the 1990s when Stewart chauffeured legendary actor Jack Nicholson during a visit to Kentucky for the Kentucky Derby. The Friday before the Derby, Stewart said he chauffeured Nicholson from a small house he was staying in on a horse farm in Versailles to the Valhalla Golf Club in Louisville to play a round of golf with three other individuals, including Nicholson’s manager.

“What you see on the movie screen is what you get in real life,” Stewart said.

In 2017, the City of Elizabethtown and Abound Credit Union began working with Skaggs Limousine

to provide transportation services for performers in their concert series at the State Theater. Because of this, Stewart said he has had the opportunity to chauffeur acts including Wynonna Judd, Diamond Rio, The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band, Sawyer Brown, Travis Tritt, Clint Black, Rodney Atkins, Mark Chesnutt, Joe Diffie, Little Texas, Clay Walker and Darryl Worley.

Stewart’s most recent celebrity client was classic country star Ronnie Milsap, who performed at the State Theater earlier this month.

Aside from working for big-name acts, Stewart said he also enjoys serving those

in the area on their prom day, wedding day or other special occasions.

“You meet different people,” he said. “They are always happy and friendly. They are able to get out and have fun with family and friends. So you get people at the happy time of life.”

Andrew Critchelow can be reached at 270-505-1413 or acritchelow@thenewsenterprise.com.