James Michael Howard, a retired battalion fire chief for the city of Charleston, died Tuesday. He was 57.

Howard graduated from Bishop England High School and Trident Technical College before beginning his career with the Charleston Fire Department.

A veteran firefighter, Howard was a battalion chief as well as chief training officer for the department before his retirement.

In addition to his service with the Fire Department, Howard served as president of the Tri-County Fire Chief's Association and was a founding member of the Fire Department Honor Guard.

He also helped found the Carolina Children's Charity in the 1980s.

Howard is survived by his wife, Julie L. Howard, as well as a daughter and a son.

A visitation will be held from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday at James A. McAlister Funeral Home. Funeral services will take place at 10 a.m. Saturday at Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church.