19 year old elected as Vienna, IL ward alderman; also volunteer - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

19 year old elected as Vienna, IL ward alderman; also volunteer firefighter

(Source: KFVS) (Source: KFVS)
VIENNA, IL (KFVS) -

While many 19 year olds are just getting started on their future careers, one Heartland teenager juggles a handful of roles in the community, one being an elected official.

Jennifer Goines, the mother of Austin Tuey, can’t contain the pride she feels for her son, the new Ward 1 Alderman in their hometown, Vienna.

"I’m his biggest supporter and biggest fan," she said.

“It is…sometimes it is overwhelming, but I just sit back and I'm like okay this is what I have to do and this is what needs to be done.." Austin Tuey said. "I plan pretty much every day or at least I try to.”

Tuey, at 19 years old, has not one, not two, but five major responsibilities in his community.

“I have school, the fire department, my mowing business, and the Dollar General and also city council,” he said.

Even as a young entrepreneur, he brings in extra cash working at the local Dollar General.

“You know, he’s got a lot on his plate for someone so young. And he’s a teenager," said one of his managers at Dollar General, Thelma Cox. "Even from the very time he started here – he was just like how can I get promoted? How can I grow here? How can I do this? He’s always wanting to grow and better himself.”

You can spot Austin driving his yellow truck around town to work, class, city council or even a fire.

Austin is on-call as a volunteer firefighter where he has many responsibilities, and Scott Wright, the assistant fire chief, said volunteering for the fire department can be very demanding.

“When this one calls, we tend to drop everything else that we’re are doing for our family and our house to come take care of this,” Wright said.

“He’s always listened to what momma said, momma pushed him extremely hard just to succeed because every parent wants their child to succeed,” Austin's mother said.

He said he lives by one motto, “Live today as if you were to die tomorrow."

Austin will be sworn into office on May 3 as one of the youngest elected officials in Vienna.

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