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Congresswoman Brenda Lawrence

Representing the 14th District of Michigan

Congresswoman Lawrence Statement on Search for Missing Southfield Fire Chief

August 3, 2015
Press Release
The search continues for Southfield Fire Chief Keith Rowley, who went overboard near Lake St. Clair

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congresswoman Brenda L. Lawrence on Sunday issued the following statement regarding the search for Southfield Fire Chief Keith Rowley, who went missing in Lake St. Clair on Friday. Authorities have resumed their search this morning after rough weather and dangerous conditions required them to temporarily halt the recovery operation Sunday evening.

"My thoughts, prayers, and heart are with the family of Keith Rowley, a man I knew well and who I respected for his lifetime of service to his community. We both loved Southfield, the city in which he grew up and where I raised my family and spent nearly 15 years as mayor.

I had the honor of approving the confirmation of Keith as Chief of the Southfield Fire Department during my tenure as mayor, and I say I had the honor because it truly was an honor to know someone who had such amazing strength of character and who held the job of serving the public in such high esteem.

Keith was a great fire chief, a wonderful colleague, a good friend, and a dedicated family man. Though authorities have said that the current search operation is a recovery operation, I know that I and Keith's family and friends, all continue to hold out hope that he may still be found alive. I also know that if he is gone, we will hold him in our memories and our hearts forever."

If you have any questions, please contact Tracy Manzer in Congresswoman Lawrence’s office at or call (202) 225-5802.

Brenda L. Lawrence was elected to Congress in November 2014. She served as Southfield mayor between 2002 and 2015. A Senior Whip, Congresswoman Lawrence represents 18 communities throughout Greater Detroit, including portions of Detroit as well as segments of Oakland and Wayne counties.