By: Michael Campbell | Twitter: @itsthesoup
Posted: Oct 9, 2017 | 12:00 p.m.
PRINCE GEORGE – Tuesday, Sept. 26 was a special night at the Prince George Board of Supervisors meeting as one of the county’s oldest emergency services organizations was recognized for six decades of service to residents and the community.
Chairman Bill Robertson presented Prince George Fire Department Company 1, represented by Chief Chris Mitchell, Chaplain Jason Cashing, and Fire and EMS Director Brad Owens, with a commendation recognizing the department for sixty years of service in Prince George County.
Prince George Volunteer Fire Department was officially established on October 31, 1957, when 48 community citizens paid $1 to join the newly formed organization as charter members.
The very first fire apparatus bought by the department was a 1943 Army surplus fire truck for a mere $200, which was stored at the J. W. Sebera’s Gas station until renovations to the old jail was completed.
The old jail building served as the first fire station until a new fire station was built in July 1969 along Courthouse Road, where it currently still resides, and the dedicated members also obtained five black jackets from the Fort Lee Fire Department along with five pairs of rubber hip boots and five metal helmets that were shared among members until enough funds were available to purchase more.
Back during that time, the original alerting method was a series of phone calls by the members’ wives and activation of a siren. This phone-tree system continued until the first Plectron Alerting system became available in the 1970’s
Along with saving lives and protecting the community, Prince George Volunteer Fire Department has raised large sums of financial support for many years to provide that fire protection to the community and over the years, the department deployed the first aerial apparatus, Truck 1, in the County for multi-level fire attack and the first Hazardous Material Response Unit in the County and became part of the Crater Regional Hazardous Material Response Team.
In addition to their firefighting and safety efforts, the department has conducted thousands upon thousands of hours of community outreach and educational programs to the public. According to the county, the department is activated for more than 800 service calls during a given year.
“The Board of Supervisors of the County of Prince George congratulates and sincerely thanks the members of the Prince George Volunteer Fire Department for their positive impacts on the quality of life
for the citizens of Prince George County,” the commendation read. “The Board of Supervisors commends the volunteers for their selfless service and sacrifices that have benefited all citizens of Prince George County and this Board offers the gratitude of a thankful County to members both past and present of the Prince George Volunteer Fire Department, Company 1 for 60 years of service to Prince George County.”
For those interested in joining the department, feel free to call 804-722-8614 or e-mail email@example.com.