Professional firefighting in West Chester Township started when trustees ordered 50 badges in June 1963.
That and the purchase of a Sutphen fire truck at a cost of $8,000 was how the Union Township – now West Chester Township – Fire Department had its humble beginnings.
Six years later, emergency medical services were added and those first volunteer paramedics were dubbed “Squad’s Men.”
That simple start and subsequent growth, is being remembered as the department embarks on a year-long celebration of firefighting.
“The department is doing several things this year to mark (its) anniversary,’’ said Barb Wilson, spokeswoman. “It’s a year to honor those who started the fire department and reflect on how it’s grown.”
The theme for this year’s observance is “remembering our past, committed to our future.”
Dispatch and other pieces of small equipment from the early years will be on display during three open houses. Along with that, certificates earned by past firefighters will also be displayed, said Chief Anthony Goller. (more…)
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