Last updated: April 11, 2017
- April 2017
Updates on Rescue 2 history.
- March 2017
Still more updates, formatting, link to fleet history.
- February 2017
Adding two-alarm and other major fires, of
Adding more detailed information about
apparatus deliveries, companies in service, and truck/company
- January 2017
Continuing general updates started late last
See also Western Wake County fire departments family tree -
Cary Lumber Company burns.
Cary's largest building
burns. A grist mill and office building owned by F. R. Gray
and Brother contains the Gray Brothers grist mill, two flour mills
and one corn mill, a cotton gin, private offices, the post office,
two store rooms, a coffin establishment, three lodge halls, and
the Episcopal chapel. The Raleigh Fire Department is
summoned and Chief Frank Simpson responds by carrying the steamer
and hose on a special train. (February 25, 1908)no26feb08
Demographics. Town has
645 people and 1.00 (?) square mile.
Western Wake Highway completed, linking Cary and
Raleigh. (August 20, 1920)
Town makes arrangements with Raleigh for "a
fire truck and crew of firemen to answer any alarms for fire
within the Town of Cary." (June 8, 1921)cb
First fire inspector appointed, Lloyd Matthews,
for Town to comply with State laws. (March 14, 1922)cb
First fire company organized after Town Alderman
appoint L. A. Cathey to organize same, so the town no longer has
to rely soly on neighboring fire departments for help. Town Board also
passes resolution to purchase fire engine. (June 6, 1922)cb
First fire engine purchase. Bid accepted for purchase
of first fire truck from American LaFrance Fire Engine
Company.cb (October 23, 1922)
Fire fire engine delivered.
American LaFrance chemical engine on Ford Model-T
one-ton chassis, equipped with two 35-gallon chemical tanks.
Registration #F-849, ship order #75740. (February 7,
First Fire Chief appointed, H. H. Waddell, with
D. C. Page serving as Assistant Chief. (May 1, 1923)cb
First firehouse, metal garage for
housing fire engine, purchased from C. D. Pruden
Corporation of Baltimore, Maryland. (Spring 1923)cb
First water lines and fire hydrants placed in
Second fire engine purchased
for $1,100 from Nash Motor Company. New chassis for American
LaFrance chemical apparatus? (September 10, 1926)
Fire department has 12 volunteers with Raleigh
firefighter R. Lee Matthews acting as part-time training officer.
West Side Inn in Cary
The Raleigh Fire Department is contacted and
Engine Company 4 responds, unleashing a "speed burst"
with a 12-minute run. Firefighters arrive in time to save the
lower half of the two-story wooden structure. The town's
firefighting equipment is already in use. Select furniture is
saved and the kitchen is not damaged. The entire upper story is
destroyed, however, with only the frame work remaining. Cary is
located 10.17 miles from old Station 4 at 505 Jefferson Street in
Raleigh. The fire department's 12-minute run averages 60
mph. (May 5, 1927)no06may27, rt05may27
Six men named town firefighters:
- W. L. Jones
- L. E. Sturdivant
- T. F. Wilkerson Jr.
- Royce Ellington
- Marvin Breeze
- Robert Atkins.
The firefighters are not paid, but excused from paying
pole tax. (July 21, 1927)cb
Six additional men appointed to Fire Department:
- Arthur Womble
- S. T. Smith
- Jack Murdock
- H. R. Adams
- E. J. Byrum
- Pat Gray, Jr. (November 17, 1927)cb
Demographics. Town has
909 people and 1.00 (?) square miles.
1931 Chevrolet pumper purchased
from Peter Pirsch & Sons, 300 GPM with
200 gallon booster tank. Note: Pump and water specs may refer to
1953 rehab. January 11, 1932)cb
Town Council instructs L. R. Hunter to sell
chemical tanks from old pumper and purchase siren to alert
firefighters. (January 11, 1932)cb
Fire department accredited by North Carolina
Fire station moved. Structure ordered
moved to new location, to behind the Masonic Lodge at
corner Chatham and Academy streets. Lodge building later
becomes Ashworth's Drugstore in 1977. (August 24, 1935)cb
Town Board authorizes Mr. Phillips to organize a fire department.
For their services, the volunteer firemen are to be exempt from paying
pole tax. (August 24, 1935)cb
Town Council calls special meeting to comply
with August 24, 1935 resolution, with following individuals
forming new fire department:
- M. R. Conner, Chief
- L. E. Midgette Assistant Chief
- C. R. Craddock
- Clyde B. Hawkins
- W. R. Matthews
- Norwood Northcutt
- Clarence Oakley
- Walter Pendegraph
- C. R. Penny
- Alf. Pleasants
- Ivan Ruth
- Alvin Slcan. (February 18, 1936)cb
Town Board grants permission for Chief Conner to
attend North Carolina Fire School in Wilmington, April 21-23. He is instructed by the Board to "economize on
all expenses." (March 1936)cb
Town Council gives permission for fire
department to join North Carolina Fireman's Association, and
purchase twenty badges for firefighters. (May 7, 1936)cb
Town agrees to pay for cleaning of firefighter's
clothing when soiled in line of duty. (May 7, 1936)cb
Town Board waives Captain Lee Matthew's dog tax
in exchange for services coaching fire department. Matthews is a
career fireman in Raleigh. (May 7, 1936)
Town Board authorizes Assistant Chief Midgette
to purchase fire hose. (December 8, 1936)cb
Law passed fining $25 anyone found guilty of
turning in a false alarm. (January 15, 1937)cb
Town Board authorizes expenses for one man to
attend fire school in Durham. (April 12, 1917)cb
Demographics. Town has
1,141 people and 1.00 square miles.
Demographics. Town has
1,496 people and between 1.00 and 2.60 square miles.
Fire station on Academy Street
demolished after lot sold to J. G. Hobby,
to raise funds for new fire station planned at corner of Cedar and
North Academy streets. (Fall 1952)
Fire engine fails at house fire.
Burning structure is reported
just beyond Town limits. 1931 Chevrolet pumper "is
pulled from the tin-roof shed" and arrives "in no time
flat" writes The State Magazine. Firefighters
lay a line into the well and switch on the fan belt-driven
pump. Water squirts all of ten feet and the firefighters
watch helplessly as the dwelling burns down.
subsequently meet with the Town Board and leave with a
proposition: if the volunteers raise $3,000 for a down
payment on a new fire engine, the Town will handle the remaining
balance. Intense fundraising follows and soon an order is
placed with the Seagrave Fire Engine Company in Columbus, Ohio.
Fire Chief is James L. Murdock. H. B.
Jordan is Assistant Chief.
New Seagrave pumper delivered. The 1953 Seagrave has a 750 GPM pump and 500 gallon
water tank, and a 12-cylinder, 202 HP motor. It cost $15,000 and is
delivered by April 4, 1953.
Movie theater in downtown Apex burns.
Fire is discovered about noon. Entire inside of theater burns
out and quickly destroys a wood partition between the theater
balcony and the storeroom over a feed store next door. When the fire
appears to threaten the business district, fire departments in Cary
and Raleigh are summoned. The Cary fire department sends newly
delivered 1953 Seagrave pumper. With Cary and Raleigh's help, the
fire is brought under control. (April 4, 1954)
First Annual Fireman's Day held.
celebration is expected to attract more than 5,000 people. Mile-long parade starts at 3:00 p.m. along Highway 1, beginning at
R. O. Heater's home on Harrison Street and concluding at Cary High
School. The fire siren signals the start of the parade with a
single blast. From 4:30 to 5 p.m., a demonstration of the
new fire truck is conducted on the school athletic field.
barbeque supper is held at the school cafeteria, sponsored by the
Junior Order of the United Mechanics, Wake County 125" and a
square dance is held from 8:30 to midnight "on the parking
apron of the Piggly Wiggly and Ken Ben stores" reports a
newspaper article. A "$10 cash prize" is given by the
fire department for the "best picture taken at the
Nearly $500 of prizes are donated by local merchants
"to those holding lucky tickets" and are displayed
"in the Adams Building between the Cary Bank and Post
Office." Each store features a "special item for
sale" and everyone is eligible for a prize, "even though
he has not bought anything in a particular store."
The new Seagrave pumper is featured
during the day's activities. Tom Stewart, representing the Seagrave
Company of South Carolina, presents the truck to Mayor Waldo H.
23 (?) years, first Saturday in May is celebrated as Fireman's Day.
(May 2, 1953)no
Fire department has 21 volunteers as of May 5,
Fire Chief is James L. Murdock. Paul
Matthews is Assistant Chief. (May 5, 1953)
Fire station at 100 W. Chatham
street completed. Brick veneer and cinder
block building measures 30 by 20 feet, has one apparatus bay, and
is adjacent to Town Hall. Building costs about $4,000. (Summer
Second Annual Fireman's Day held. (May 1954)
displayed at Fireman's
day. Work by firefighters started in Spring 1953. The 1931 Chevrolet/Pirsch
pumper receives a new engine, brakes, tires, paint job, 350 GPM
front-mounted pump, and 250 gallon booster tank. (May 1954)
displayed at Fireman's day. Built by firefighters using an
ex-military tractor and a converted gasoline tanker trailer, it carries 4,500 gallons and has a 350
GPM portable pump. It's assembled from donated parts and after more
than 4,000 man-hours of firefighter labor during the past four
The idea for the tractor-drawn apparatus came from
the Wake County Board of Commissioners, which set up funds to
purchase tank trailers for rural fire departments that obtain
tractors to pull them. Legal problems prevented the funds
from being used, but the Cary Fire Department went ahead
The tractor was purchased at Camp Lejeune as
military surplus, a 180-horsepower International truck tractor
with 10 forward speeds and two reverse speeds. The 4,000
tank is donated by Bryan-Cooper Oil Company of Raleigh and mounted
on a wheeled chassis by firefighters, who also install new tires,
brakes, and lights.
Mounted at the back of the tank is a 350
GPM portable pump that can be used to power water streams or fill
the tank. The inside of the tank is given a special coating,
so drinking water can be transported.
The tractor has a
1,500-watt AC generator mounted, ten new tires and tubes, and a
brilliant red paint job. The engine, brakes, and other parts
are overhauled. The bell from Cary's first fire truck, a
Model-T in 1924, is re-plated and placed on the truck.
The entire project is completed by the
twenty fire department members
without funds from the Town treasury. Instead, they're
assisted by a host of individuals donating equipment and other
things. (May 28, 1954)
Second 2 constructed on 100 block of Cedar
The 20 by 65 foot tin shed is erected
on a Town-owned lot, behind the present location of Rogers Motel.
Firefighters furnish the labor and obtain the materials for
building. Timber for framing is cut from another Town-owned lot. By
August 1954, as shown in News & Observer story, the building has
been erected and occupied. Firemen plan to add flooring and doors.
(Summer 1954)cfr, no__aug54
Cary Rural Fire Department, Inc. incorporated.
(November 1, 1954)sos
Home on East Chatham Street burns. Residence of N. G. Gullie is damaged
but not destroyed.rt
Firefighters help Morrisville organize a fire
Fire department answers 27 calls during year,
including six in Wake County and two for mutual aid to Morrisville and
Apex. They reach Morrisville eight minutes after the
call is received.rt
Third Annual Fireman's day held.
starts at 3:00 p.m. New "emergency service truck for
Civilian Defense" is presented at 5:00 p.m. in front of the
"American Legion hut," with the presentation made by
Fire Chief J. C. Griffis to Cary Mayor W. H. Rood "accepting
the equipment on behalf of the town" reports the The
Raleigh Times. Activities at 9:00 p.m. include "and
card and coin game in one quarter of the town" and, in honor
of Mother's Day, all mothers are "taken for rides on the fire
truck." Children get their turns from 8:00 p.m. to 9:30 p.m.
Civil Defense rescue truck
displayed at Fireman's Day.
ex-military, GMC mobile machine shop, carries $8,000 worth of
equipment including 5,000-watt portable generator, 2,500-watt
generator, two-way radio, $600 resuscitator, block and tackle,
ropes, a portable oxygen acetylene cutting torch, in all "196
different pieces of equipment, all new." Same is also the
only Civil Defense rescue truck operated by a volunteer fire
department in North Carolina. (May 1955)
1949 Buick Roadmaster purchased for Fire Chief. Vehicle is purchased used.
Station 2 expanded. Addition built
to house rescue truck.rt
Fire Chief is J. C. Griffis
Fire Chief is Bob Elder and the Assistant Chief
is Bob Heater. (April 21, 1956)
Fourth Annual Fireman's Day is held.
attracts 5,000 people. Festivities begin at 3 p.m. Fire engines parade from Apex, Garner, Morrisville, Raleigh, and
Cary. "Musical airs" are furnished by the
"Drum and Bugle Corps from State College" and senior and
junior bands from Cary High School. Parade also features
"Girl Scouts, Wake County fire chiefs' cars, lots of floats
and cars carrying pretty girls" reports the May 7 edition of
Raleigh Times. Activities also include "Quizno"
from 6 until 11 p.m., a "legal cousin of outlawed
Bingo." Fireman's Day concludes with a street dance and
the music of "the Mills Brothers Hillbilly Band." (May 7,
New tanker displayed at
Fireman's day. The ex-military International Harvester,
2,500 gallon tanker is equipped with a 100 GPM pump. Rebuilding was
Jackie Hunter. (May 7, 1956)
Plans announced to build $75,000 fire station on 100 x 120 foot site
on southeast corner of Cedar and N. Academy St. Fund-raising
begins on Fireman's Day. Cornerstone bricks are auctioned
off for a total of $2,035.00. (May 7, 1956)
Fire department has 25 members and two fire
stations of September 22, 1956. Fire
Chief is Bob Heater.
Boyd Wilson Morris becomes first paid
firefighter. (October 1, 1956)
Fifth Annual Fireman's Day held.
Celebration starts at 2:30 p.m. with a parade including "the
Air Force ROTC marching airmen, the army ROTC drum and bugle corps
and the Army ROTC Pershing Rifles crack drill team, all from State
College" reports the May 3 edition of The Raleigh Times. From 3:30 to 5 p.m., "the fire department and the Civil
Defense rescue team" display equipment and "provide
entertainment for children and adults on the high school football
field." Starting at 5:30 p.m. is a fish-fry and at 6:30
p.m., a "gasoline-powered kiddie automobile will be given
away." Games and dancing are also featured, with activities
ending at 11:30 p.m. (May 1957)rt
Fire department has one full-time and 24
volunteer firefighters as of December 9, 1957. Fire Chief is W. E.
Henderson. Assistant Chief is J. P. Matthews.cfdr
As of December 9, 1957, fire department equipment consists
||1954 /1931 Chevrolet Pursch,
300 GPM, 200 gallon booster tank, 1000 feet of 2 1/2"
hose, 500 feet of 1 1/2" hose, four Indian tanks.
750 GPM, 500 gallon booster tank, 1000 feet of 2 1/2"
hose, 500 feet of 1 1/2" hose.
tandem tractor tanker - 350 GPM portable pump, 4,700 gallon tank,
500 feet of 2 1/2" hose, 250 feet of 1 1/2" hose,
one Indian tank.
||1955/19__ rescue truck
- 2500 watt generator, 5 kilowatt generator, complete set
Civil Defense tools and equipment.
tanker, 100 GPM power take-off pump, 2,500 gallon tanker, 200
feet of 2 1/2" hose, two Indian tanks.
||1949 Buick, two Indian
Two-way radio system installed. Base station
installed in Station 1 with "stand-by receivers" at
Fire Chief's house, Town Clerk's office, and ready room at Station
2. Radio equipment also installed in all fire apparatus, the
rescue truck, and the Chief's car. The frequency assigned by the
FCC is 46.06 with a maximum output of 500 watts.
Sixth Annual Fireman's Day held.
Firefighters continuing fundraising for new fire station,
auctioning ten "green bricks" with the highest bidder to
have their name engraved in one of the first stones in the new
building, planned since 1956 and expected to be completed in 1961.
(May 3, 1958)rt
Fire department increases to 28 members.
Fire Chief is J. Paul Matthews.wcfa
Seventh Annual Fireman's day held.
Celebration begins at 3:30 p.m. with a parade. Other events
include a fish fry, door prizes, and a square dance "in the
Winn-Dixie parking lot on Chatham Street" reports the April
29 edition of The Raleigh Times. (May 3, 1959)rt29apr59
Fire Chief is Paul Mathews. Assistant
Chief is Earl Williams. (May 1959)
Construction started on
Station 1. Plans have been drawn for $75,000
building with basement and two stories. Funds have been
solicited during five years of fundraising. Firefighters
perform most of the work after hours. Completion is due in
Demographics. Town has
3,356 people and 2.60 square miles.
Eighth Annual Fireman's Day held.
Schedule includes "a parade at 3:30 p.m., supper
at the high school cafeteria from 5 until 8 p.m., games from 6:30
until 8 p.m., and a street dance from 8 until
midnight." Fried fish is served in the cafeteria,
prepared by firefighters, their wives, and members of the Fire
Auxiliary Association. Drawings are held for "various prize
merchandise" and an open house is held "at the emergency
shelter" set up at the Cary Methodist Church from noon until
4:30 p.m. (May 7, 1960)na, rt
Fire Chief is J. C. Griffis. R. B. Heater
is Assistant Chief. (May 7, 1960)cfdr
Firefighter Vernon Lee Thompson, 28, is killed and Firefighter
Willis Edward (Billy) Henderson, 32, is injured when their
tractor-drawn tanker overturns near Meredith College.
The accident occurs about 10:00 a.m., while they are turning from
onto a service road that runs between college property and the State College
animal husbandry farm.
Both are thrown from the open-cab apparatus.
is pinned under the cab and dies after gasoline leaking from the fuel tank
under the seat is apparently ignited by an electrical short. Henderson is
transported and admitted to Rex Hospital for cuts, bruises, and
firefighters and other rescue workers spend nearly two hours recovering
Thompson's body. The first wrecker sent to the scene is unable to raise the
truck. A larger, second wrecker is called and lifts the cab enough for
Thompson's body to be removed.
Both Thompson and Henderson were state
employees working at nearby Camp Polk prison farm and were en route to
extinguish the rekindling of a trash fire near the prison dump from the night
before. Henderson was driving about 15 miles an hour when the accident occurred.
Pavement markings stretched about 120 feet, created by the pressure of the
heavy, slowing truck. The cab of the tanker was destroyed; the apparatus was not
returned to service.
Funeral services are held on June 18 at Cary Baptist Church, with
burial at Cary Cemetery the same day. Thompson was a volunteer
member of the Cary Fire Department. (June 16, 1960)
Mayor Waldo Rood suggests town establish its own
fire department, "a volunteer group to work under the
direction of a paid chief who would also be the new police
chief" reports The Raleigh Times and which "would
be separate from the present Cary volunteer department which
serves not only the town but the surrounding rural
area." Firefighters "could choose whether to come
with the town or remain where they are." The Town Board
subsequently adopts a resolution in support of the Mayor.
Townspeople and firefighters disagree with the proposal and
"a committee is appointed to work out the differences."
Town Board approves purchase of "accidental
death and disability income insurance" for fire department
members, reports The Raleigh Times. Question of
insurance arose at town meeting one week ago, with eleven
firefighters threatening to resign unless the issue was discussed
immediately. After the volunteers "carried out their
threat," the Town Board immediately "sent a negotiator
to the fire station and a compromise was worked out whereby the
resignations were withdrawn on condition the board purchase the
insurance at a special meeting to be held soon after." (July
Fire Chief is J. C. Griffis. Assistant Chief is Willie Crumpler. (July 22, 1960)rt
Fire department split into two entities, newly
created Cary Fire Department serving town, and Cary Rural Fire
Department serving unincorporated areas.
J. L. (Pete)
Murdoch is appointed Fire Chief of both departments. Paul Matthews
is appointed Assistant Chief of the town department and Willie Crumpler is appointed Assistant Chief of the rural
The 24 members of the fire department are split
equally between Town and Rural departments, with more men needed
"to build up both departments" reports the September 10
edition of The Raleigh Times. Applications are
available at the Town Hall and applicants must be between 19 and
40 years of age, in good health, and willing to follow all fire
department rules and regulations. Two "paid
firemen" are to be hired, so "at least one well-trained
fireman is on duty in town at all times."
Yet worked out is
the "division of property" as "some of the
equipment that has been used by the previous department is owned
jointly by the town and rural departments." Both
departments are expected to "fall short of the necessary
equipment when the property is divided." (September 15, 1960)rt10sep60
Construction on Station 1
abandoned during dispute among volunteer firefighters and
town officials. Basement has been dug and foundations have
been laid. Approximately $15,000 has been spent on the
Ownership of Station 1 site at 100 N. Academy
Street transferred to town. (January 1,
Ninth Annual Fireman's Day held.
includes a parade, "bands, pretty girls, and lots of fire
units" reports a newspaper article. Three school bands
from Cary appear, along with others from "Knightdale,
Millbrook, Erwin" and "Corinth-Holders." Fire
units come from "New Hope, Apex, Garner, Swift Creek,
Fairgrounds Rural and the Raleigh departments. And, of
course, Cary's town and rural departments." "Perched atop a convertible," Molly Jo Waters, Miss
Cary, is "resplendent in a white dress" and "other
pretty girls rode the FHA float." (May, 1961)
Yrac Volunteer Fire Department organized by former Cary Fire
Department volunteers. See
separate history. (December 1, 1961)
Tenth Annual Fireman's Day held.
Department is "wholly responsible for putting on Fireman's
Day this year" reports The Raleigh Times, though
"municipal fire department members" participate
individually and the town enters "its units in the
parade." Proceeds, however, "go to the new
department." Parade starts at 3:00 p.m. Street
dance is held from 8 to 12 p.m. "at the Winn-Dixie parking
lot." Prizes given away include "a Hereford steer,
boys and girls bicycles and other items donated by local
merchants." A grandstand "for special guests" is
set up "in front of the Baptist Church" and Buck Sloan
serves as announcer. (May 1962)rt
Eleventh Annual Fireman's Day held.
Celebration begins at 3:00 p.m. with a parade which includes
"fire equipment from a half-dozen or so Wake County
departments and an antique fire truck from the Chapel Hill fire
organization" reports the May 3 edition of The Raleigh
Times. Miss Cary rides in the parade, as does Miss Yrac,
whose identify is "kept secret until she appears." Door prizes include "a fat steer and a boy's or girl's
bicycle." A "country music band" provides
music for the street dance. Proceeds benefit the Yrac Rural
Fire Department, though members of the Cary fire department assist
with activities. (May 4, 1963)rt03may63
Calvin Beck appointed as the first full-time Fire Chief.
Salary is $4,587. He
joined the department in 1960, hired as a Captain and a Training
Officer, after serving in Durham and Chapel Hill. Beck, 36, is a
graduate of arson schools at UNC and Cornell University, and has
attended the state fire inspection school in Greensboro. He's also
an instructor with the N.C. Industrial Education Center Firemanship
School. (By August 1, 1963)cfdr, no01aug63
Apparatus delivery: 1957
Chevrolet service ladder truck.no22nov64
Ladder truck stored at Public
Utilities building behind fire station. Hole is knocked
out of wall, for temporary housing of
the Chevrolet service truck. Fire engine is longer than the
concrete-block building, so plastic cloth protects front of the
apparatus which protrudes from the shelter.no22nov64
Twelfth Annual Fireman's Day held.
Activities begin with a 3:00 p.m. parade which includes
"marching bands from Apex, Wake Forest, Clayton, Knightdale
and Cary Schools, the first official appearance of Miss Cary, a
Miss Yrac and other fire department queens, fire apparatus from
all Wake County departments, a Model T fire truck, political
candidates, town officials, floats from various businesses in the
area, scouts, clowns, and a U.S. Marine display" reports the
April 29 edition of The Raleigh Times. Parade marches
"from Urban Drive down Chatham Street and onto Academy
Street." A fish-fry is held at the junior high school
cafeteria and street dancing in the Winn-Dixie parking lot. Music is provided by "Red Rose and the Dixie Mountain
Boys." And a 1964 "Ford automobile" is given
away as a door prize. (Saturday after April 29, 1964)rt29apr64
Fire department has three full-time and 15
part-time firefighters as of November 22, 1964.no
Town council authorizes construction of
the Academy Street fire station. Cited in December 18, 1964,
Raleigh Times story.
Donald "Don" Tripp hired as Fire Chief.
He's a Chapel Hill
firefighter, age 25. He's a graduate of the Charlotte Fire College,
Maryland State Fire School, the Fire Administration School at N.C.
State, and the Wilson IEC school. His salary is 4,632 annually.
Department has two other paid employees: Sherwood Thorton and D. R.
Baker. (January 1, 1965)rt18dec65
1965 American LaFrance pumper, 1000/750, open cab.
(March 13, 1965)cfd
Thirteenth Annual Fireman's Day held.
Event is sponsored by Yrac Rural Fire Department and begins with a
parade at 3:00 p.m., followed by games, a fish-fry, a street
dance, and the "giving away of a color television set"
reports the April 30 edition of The Raleigh Times. During the parade, fire and police officials direct traffic
"from US 64 to NC 54." (May 1, 1965)rt30apr65
Station 1 completed on 100 N.
Seaboard Railroad boxcar
on N. West Street, behind Suttons Service Station catches fire.
Alarm is reported at 10:30 a.m. by telephone. Engine 1
responds with six firefighters, who extinguish the fire with a
booster line. "Grease on brakes" is cited as the cause
of ignition. No damage is reported. (January 8, 1966)
Fourteenth Annual Fireman's Day held.
sponsored by Yrac Rural Fire Department and begins with a
"square dance festival" at 2:00 p.m. reports the May 7
edition of The News and Observer. From 4 to 6 p.m.,
children are given "free fire truck rides." From 4
to 8 pm., a "fish fry" is held in the cafeteria of the
junior high school. Games, door prizes, and a "dance in
the school gym" are also held. (May 7, 1966)nt
John W. Ward hired as Fire Chief, after Chief Tripp retires
that month for personal reasons. (October 15, 1966)
Garage apartment at corner
of Ward and Cedar streets burns. Alarm is reported at
3:45 p.m. by both telephone and person coming to station. Engine 1, Engine 2, and Ladder 1 respond. Fourteen
firefighters battle blaze, one suffering first- and second-degree
burns on "hands, forearms, face, and small part of
back." Fire is confined to apartment, with $6500
loss. Cause is cited as "faulty oil heater." 1,400
feet of 2 1/2" hose and 800 feet of 1 1/2" hose
utilized. (December 11, 1966)
Fifteenth Annual Fireman's Day held.
than 5,000 people attend. Proceeds benefit Yrac Rural Fire
Department. Events include "free rides on the
department's big red fire trucks," a "gospel singing
contest," and "a dance in the junior high gym"
reports the May 8 edition of The Raleigh Times. Profits
will go to the rural fire department's "building and
equipment fund." (May 8, 1967)rt08may67
R. Lee Mathews hired as acting Fire Chief.
He's hired after
Chief Ward resigns that month. Matthews is a retired Asst.
Chief of the Raleigh Fire Department with 37 years of service. A
Cary resident for many years, Matthews “took the job reluctantly be
cause he really was enjoying retirement…but came to help us out of a
jam and is doing a fine job of running things for us. He’s helping
us get reorganized,” said Town Manager L. L. Lane. (January 21, 1967)mjl-blog
C. Frank Ayscue hired as Fire Chief.
The twenty-four year-old
had served five years with the Henderson Fire Department. He served
until July 15, 1968, when he was hired as a firefighter for the City
of Raleigh. He retired from Raleigh as a Senior Firefighter in 1989. (May 1, 1967)mjl-blog
John L. Dew hired as Fire Chief, after resignation of Chief Ayscue. (July 30, 1968)
Billy Henderson hired as Fire Chief. (February 7,
Fire department has three full-time and 17
Demographics. Town has 7,640 people and
6.01 square miles.
Historic Page House
destroyed by fire as Town is preparing for Centennial celebration.
Fire starts at 2:30 a.m. in electrical wiring on the first
floor and has spread to the second floor by the time the first
firefighter arrives. The nearest fire hydrant on Academy
Street proves dry and before another hydrant can be located, the
fire truck's 500 gallon water tank is emptied. Firefighters
race to the next hydrant, near the Yrac fire station, laying 2000
feet of supply line. By the time more water is flowed,
flames are almost through the roof. By dawn, only a handful
of charred timbers of the main house and a lone smokestack are
standing. (September 22, 1970)aac
Fire department has six full-time and 19
Terry L. Edmondson hired as Fire Chief. (January 4,
Donald McLamb is Assistant Chief. (May
Town Safety Committee makes recommendations for
improvements to fire department.
Report cites "growing pains" and the results of
a four-week inquiry into "all phases of the Fire
Department." Recommendations include:
- becoming a
"fully paid department when funds are available"
immediate installation of a new radio system
- building an addition to the
"present Central Fire Station"
- drill scheduling
- creating a "Code of Conduct" that should
emphasize "drinking habits, driving habits, and any other
personal habits which would reflect on the individual, the Fire
Department or the uniform." (September 23, 1971)
Fire department has nine full-time and 18
volunteer firefighters as of September 23, 1971.
Cary Area Rescue Squad starts service.
call is answered at 4:15 p.m. on August 11, 1972. Fire
Department discontinues rescue service. Rescue squad is
formed by firefighters from Yrac, plus one Cary firefighter. First
rescue squad Chief is Jerry Adams. (August 1972)aaac
- 1971 American LaFrance pumper delivered, 1000/500.
older, pumper is refurbished.cfdr
Two-way radio equipment replacement program
started. Radio system also tied into County-wide radio system.
Contract signed to expand Station 1.
The $78,000, two-story, 5,200 square-foot addition will
add additional apparatus room, larger sleeping quarters, a large
training room, and more storage area to Station 1.
Fire department begins dispatching Cary Area Rescue Squad. (Mid-August, 1972)
Fire department has 12 full-time and 10
- 1970 Ford 1/2 ton pick-up truck
purchased. Later equipped with "dry
chemicals for fighting fuel or gasoline fires."
- Chief's car purchased. cfdr
New radio base station and new mobile radios
Fire department has 14 full-time and 14
volunteer firefighters, three pumpers, one equipment truck, one
pick-up truck, and one car.cfdr
Fire department hires full-time fire prevention
New programs involving fire department including
servicing and maintaining all fire hydrants and reviewing all site
plans for future town development.cfdr
Fire department has 15 full-time and 11
volunteer firefighters as of January 3, 1974.
House fire at 604 Queens Ferry Road
kills woman. Fire is reported at 3:46
a.m. Firefighters find Marilyn Powell, 41, "lying
'between the stove and the back door in the kitchen, just 36
inches from the back door" reports the January 18 edition of
News and Observer. Mrs. Powell's twin teenage sons
escape. Police officer arrives and attempts rescue, shooting
through lock of outside door to bedroom, but cannot enter because
smoke is too thick. (January 17, 1974)no18jan74
Twenty-second Annual Fireman's Day held.
Hundreds attend the celebration that begins at 4:00 p.m. with
"a special firefighting and rescue demonstration given by
members of the Fire Department and the Cary Area Rescue
Squad." Also included is a "fish-fry dinner" and a
"basketball match between the Cary Fire Department and the
Cary Police Department" reports the May 8 edition of The
Raleigh Times. Admission to the ball game is a $1
donation to the fire department. Police officers defeat
firefighters 39-34. Door prizes "given away at
halftime" are "an RCA color television, a Honda
motorcycle, a 10-speed bicycle, and a Singer sewing
machine." Earlier, firefighters sold tickets for
chances to win the prizes. Coincidentally, none of the four
prizes are awarded to Cary residents. (May 8, 1974)rt108may74
House fire at 1016
Wilshire Drive kills three girls. Fire is reported at 3:45
a.m. and is caused by careless smoking. Other occupants
escape. Fire begins in "downstairs area" and sends
"heavy smoke into the upstairs area" where the girls are
sleeping, reports the June 10 edition of The News and Observer.
Killed are Susan Hagwood, 6, and her half sisters Shirley
Hathaway, 15, and Elizabeth Hathaway, 16. All three girls die of
smoke inhalation, Wake County Coroner Truman Rhodes later
reports. (June 9, 1974)no10jun74
Town Public Information Officer issues press
release requesting citizens make "no non-emergency
calls" to the fire department "for at least ten minutes
after the siren has been silenced," after automobile fire on
December 17 results in multiple calls from news reporters and
other people, tying up telephone lines needed by the dispatcher.
(December 26, 1974)pr
Land for new Station 2 purchased.
Town agrees to buy "slightly over half an acre" at the Cary
Village Shopping Center, reports the May 30 edition of The
Raleigh Times. Station expected to be operating by March,
1976. The Fire
Insurance Bureau told the town in 1970 that it would need a second
fire station by the time its population reached 13,000, the Fire
Chief tells the newspaper. (July 15,
Fire Chief Terry L. Edmondson resigns "amid
allegations that he made false alarm telephones to his own
department" reports the August 2 edition of The News and
Two calls on July 28 report fires at the South
Hills Motor Inn and Helmold Fire. Voice similarities are
noted and a Southern Bell operator tells fire officials that the
second caller's number was traced, and was made from Edmondson's
home. Edmondson was initially suspended for two weeks without pay.
The fire chief cited the charges and previous frustrations as his
reasons for resigning. Town officials declined to conduct an
investigation. Captains Dewey W. Poole and Macon W. House are appointed
acting chiefs. Edmundson is subsequently hired as Fire Chief of
the Raleigh-Durham Airport fire department. (August 7, 1975)cn13aug75, no02aug75
Fire department has 17 full-time and 13
volunteer firefighters as of August 1, 1975.
Ned Perry hired as Fire Chief, serves until
Perry is 17-year veteran of the Raleigh Fire
Department, with the rank of Captain. He's also president of the Raleigh
Firefighter's Association. The salary for the position is
$15,828. (October 6, 1975)
Bicentennial colored fire hydrants, painted red, white, and blue,
and located on portions of Chatham and Academy street, are approved
by Town Council. Fire Chief Ned Perry
protests, showing the Town Council "pictures of
unattractively decorated" hydrants and noting "problems
firemen could have" if the hydrants are not painted
carefully. (Thursday before October 15, 1975)cn15oct75
Fire department begins monitoring CB channel 9,
the emergency frequency, after receiving base station donated by
Cary citizen Larry H. Royster. (January 1976)cn
McDonald's restaurant at
Cary Village and next to Station 2 site burns. Two
engine companies and one ladder company respond from
downtown. The early morning fire, reported at 12:45 a.m.,
apparently starts "from a wire behind the basement electrical
panel box" reports the February 4 edition of The Cary News. Heavy smoke on second floor alerts "a passing motorist who
turned in the alarm." Extensive damage is done and
firefighters remain on the scene until 2:00 a.m. (January 28, 1976)cn04feb76
Brush fire burns 40 to 50 acres of
land between Highway 54 and Hillsborough Road
"from the WPTF towers to Wayside Furniture" reports the March
3 edition of The Cary News. Nine fire
departments assist the Cary Rural Fire Department, while Cary town and
Apex respond to another woods fire in the 900 block of West
Chatham Street. Cary Rural Fire Department Fire Chief
David Weaver believes first fire was actually "five different
fires which were ignited by sparks from the brakes of a passing
train." (March 3, 1976)cn03mar76
Last Fireman's Day held.
annual event is sponsored by both Cary and Yrac fire
departments. Celebration starts with "games at the Cary
Office Center on Walnut Street" reports the April 28 edition
of The Raleigh Times. Same consist of an
"inter-department water fight" and a "bucket
brigade race." Next is a "famous flounder fish
fry" from 4:30 to 8 p.m. at the Cary Elementary School. "Quizzo" starts at 7:00 p.m. at the Academy Street fire
station with hot dogs "available for
refreshments." Live music starts at 8 p.m. "in the
parking lot of the Fidelity Bank across the street from the
Academy Street fire station." Morning Dew
performs. Door prize drawings are held at 10:00 p.m. with
"dollar chances" sold for "prizes consisting of a
Teaberry C.B. radio, microwave oven, outdoor gas grill," a
ten-speed bicycle, and a skateboard. (May 1, 1976)rt
Station 2 opens on 875 NE Maynard
- The one-story, 4,103 square-foot (current size) facility is
located on 0.41 acres.wcrer
- The facility costs just over $200,000,
including land and landscaping.
Station is activated in August 1976. Ceremony and open house held on
December 5, 1976.
Fire department has 26 full-time employees and
11 auxiliary firefighters, four pumpers, and one ladder truck as
of December 5, 1976.
1976 Ford/American LaFrance pumper, 1250/500.
Cook Out restaurant at 500 Chatham Street
burns. Fire is reported at 3:28 a.m. and firefighters arrive
one minute later to find wooden A-frame structure fully engulfed
in flames. Fire is under control within ten minutes, but
thirty-four firefighters remain on the scene for three
hours. More than a dozen cans of pain stored on the second
level of the one-story structure may have helped the fire spread.
the building, valued at $35,000 and $18,000 worth of cooking
equipment, are a total loss. Fire is believed started by ignition
of several quarts of floor cleaner, perhaps by severe winds
causing an electrical shortage. (March 23, 1977)rt23mar77
Land for Station 3 purchased on Kildaire Farm Road. Located near the intersection with the proposed location
of Cary Parkway. The property costs $3,180. Eighteen months
later, town officials discussed moving the station site, due to
rising estimated expenses in the planned station construct.
Architect William Keener tells officials that the current lot will
require more filling, grading, and shaping than originally
anticipated. The parcel is subsequently rejected for the project,
and a new site is purchased in October 1984, at 1807 Kildaire Farm
Road. (March 1977)cn16aug78
Raleigh Times reports on organizational updates since the hiring
of Fire Chief Ned Perry:
- Firefighters organized into three platoons, instead of two.
- Work week shortened from 72 to 60 hours.
- Plans to assign a paid firefighter staff the ladder truck.
- Plans to house the ladder truck, to protect from wind and
weather. Currently, the truck is parked in the lot across the
street from the firehouse.
- New program started, where department members visit schools,
churches, and businesses, to help firefighters have faster
access to buildings during emergencies.
- Firefighters organized into two companies, with each company
responsible for responding to one-half of the town. (May 30,
Siren removed from Station
1. (July-August, 1977)yfd
GMC/Alexander service truck.
- Fleet #922. Cost $27,000.
- Body designed by Fire Chief Ned
Perry and built by Alexander Welding of
Raleigh. Enclosed body style keeps ladders dry, freeing
firefighters from having to clean equipment after runs during
rain. Compartment doors are also lighted and the
compartments are custom-fit for the equipment.
- Note: Model year
previously cited as 1975. (November 8, 1977)cfd
First female joins as volunteer firefighter.
Freight train derails near
Old US.1 just west of Cary. Four empty coal cars on a
Seaboard Coast Line train derail in afternoon accident. No
injures are reported. (February 2, 1978)no03feb78
Distraught man kills self and
wife with bomb at Cary Village Shopping Center.
Blast occurs about noon in conference room of law office,
after Jerry Ronald Sowers, 32, threatens to "blow up himself
and everyone in the building" unless allowed to talk to his
wife alone at a 9 a.m. meeting to discuss a separation
agreement. Opening his vest and revealing a six-inch device
covered with gray tap, Sowers first demands to take his wife out
of the building.
Later, holding a battery in one hand and a
bare wire in the other, he demands to spend an hour with his wife
alone. About 10 a.m., his lawyer persuades Sowers to have
the talk in the conference room. The building is evacuated
about 10:30 a.m. Police grant Sowers his requested hour at
Minutes later, both Sowers and his wife, Anne
Elizabeth Sowers, 36, are killed instantly. Fire Chief Ned
Perry estimates the force of the explosion equal to "several
sticks of dynamite." Investigators later say they may never
be able to determine if the bomb was accidentally or intentionally
triggered. (May 11, 1978)no12may78, no13may78
Joyce Finnerty hired as first fire educator. The thirty-one year
old Cary resident is only one of three fire educators in the state.
Her first priority is expanding the fire department's school
education program. She's also planned to receive training and serve
as an active firefighter. (October 1978)cn11oct78
Apparatus note: 1953 Seagrave pumper assigned to
brush fire duties.
Apparatus note: 1979/1963 Dodge brush truck placed
Former Air Force ambulance is purchased
as military surplus for $700 in
1978. The low-mileage vehicle (11,000 miles) is obtained from
an Army Surplus Depot and rebuilt by firefighters, with
consultation of town mechanics. The conversion into a brush truck
$1,500. Work is done at both fire stations and at the Town Shop. (May 10, 1979)
Fire department accepts applications for four
First step in application process is passing an
aptitude test administered by the Employment Security Commission.
Once past that hurdle, applications face a series of fire
department tests including carrying a specific amount of weight
for a certain distance and carrying a hose up a ladder. Once
hired, incoming firefighters learn to maneuver with equipment and
are expected to begin a physical exercise program. During a
four-week orientation phase, rookies must learn every piece of
equipment on a fire truck. There's also a written exam and
dexterity tests. At the end of four weeks, the firefighter
is assigned to an officer and company and can officially be called
a Firefighter I. The starting pay range is from $10,005 to
$13,250. (June 1979)cn06jun79
Town gets 911 emergency telephone service,
becoming first Wake County community to adopt the shorter number.
(October 8, 1979)no05oct79
Town revamps pay schedules for all employees,
bringing salary levels in line with comparable municipalities.
Fire hydrants changed to national standard threads.
Threads changed on 900 fire hydrants in town during a seven-day
period. The project costs about $41,000. To expedite the program each
hydrant is assigned a number. The town is then divided into
quarters, and then into routes. Firefighters are divided into teams
to install the threads on the hydrants, hoses, and trucks. The
existing threads originally matched Raleigh's, and for the assumed
purpose of mutual aid, if Raleigh responded to Cary. The threads
later evolved into a different "Cary thread," and both types were in
use. By changing to national standard, there were several benefits:
developers could purchase fire hydrants without special ordering.
Such hydrants would be delivered faster. And the fire department
could order new hose couplings faster, without customization. The
new equipment was provided by Zimmerman and Evans Fire and Safety in
Greensboro. (December 1980)cn02jan80
Demographics. Town has
21,763 people and 9.86 square miles.
Apparatus updates. Fire department adopts SLEP, Service Life
Extension Program after program receives endorsement from town
Safety Committee. Program is designed to extend the life of
current equipment and is planned to begin by modernizing two
- Engine 2 will be rebuilt, with diesel, pump
ratios, transmission, air brake systems, and gauges all replaced
and extending the life of the apparatus by better than 20
years. The refurbishing is estimated at $45,000, compared to
the replacement cost for an equal engine in excess of
- Engine 4 is already being revamped, with work
continuing on an in-house basis, and which should be completed in
three to six months. (February 1980)cn20feb80
Fire department assumes Public Works duties of
creating and maintaining street signs for town.
are set up at Station 2, complete with lamination machine built
by firefighters. Members of "B" shift are
"primarily involved in setting up the systematic
program" reports the May 14 edition of The Cary News,
and "for at least part of every workday, the men of B shift
move to a different locale in the town with a work list that has
been dictated by observed needs of the police department."
Firefighters "have their work cut out for them" as town
"is in the process of replacing all concrete street name
posts" with upright, single-blade signs with reflecting
lettering. (Spring 1980)cn
Apparatus note: 1953 Seagrave pumper removed
Fire department consists of 26 full-time and 14
volunteer firefighters. Full-time firefighters work
eight-hour rotating shifts and are also on-call for major
fires. Out of 26 fire departments in Wake County, Cary and
Raleigh are the only ones with paid staffs. (June 18, 1980)
Apparatus note: 1965 American LaFrance pumper
installation of 6171T Detroit diesel engine, an MT644 Allison
automatic transmission, power steering, complete rewiring, air
brakes, cab top, sand blasting, and repainting. Refurbishment costs $70,022.16.cfdr
Fire Prevention Officer Captain Wayne House
assists Syracuse Plastics Inc. on Old Apex Road with education of
newly formed fire brigade. (February 1982)
Apparatus delivery: 1982
Ford C/Pierce pumper, 1000/500. Fleet #905. (March 16, 1982)cfdr
Residence at 200 Wendy Court burns. Afternoon fire is stared by shorting wires in homemade bird
repellant. Damage is estimated at $30,000. Firefighters are called to the scene at 2 p.m. (May 16, 1982)
Volunteer are firefighters phased out, and fire department
becomes a career organization.
Brush fires along Seaboard
Coastline railroad trucks are fought by around 50
firefighters from Cary, Yrac, Morrisville, Fairgrounds, and Swift
Creek fire departments. First fire is reported at 3:45 p.m.,
along the tracks near the town hall. Other fires are fought
near Lowes, near Aeroglide Corporation and Bashford Road. Fires are believed started by sparks or oil from train heading
west out of Raleigh, though, when stopped in Apex, nothing is
found wrong.(March 4, 1983)na
Chemical spill at 113 W. Maynard Road
causes evacuation of businesses, schools, and residents.
Four firefighters are injured when
splattered by percholoroethylene, a dry-cleaning substance, while
trying to plug the leak on a truck transporting same. The
fluid seeps under their gloves and runs down their chests. They're treated on the scene, with water and subsequent
lotion. One of the four, Captain William Reynolds, is
hospitalized after inhaling the substance, 175 gallons of which
are eventually released onto the ground. Police close
Maynard Road from Kildare Farm Road to Pond Street, close three
businesses and evacuate Briarcliff Elementary School at about 1:30
More than 60 firefighters from nine departments are
called to the scene. Cary firefighters stay on the scene
until 2 a.m. the next morning. Getting enough breathing air
proves the greatest challenge, as firefighters attempting to stop
the leak keep running out of bottled air. Firefighters
subsequently spend three hours in Raleigh that night, refilling
SCBA tanks. Local restaurants provide food to the exhausted
firefighters, both delivering to the scene and feeding more than
30 firefighters for free at a restaurant.
residents are allowed back into their homes after midnight,
instructed to leave their windows open for 45 minutes, to ensue
any chemical vapors escape. (March 7, 1983)cn,
Apparatus delivery: 1984
Chevy K20 brush truck, 200/225. (March 1, 1984)cfdr
Land for Station 3 purchased at 1807 Kildaire Farm Road. (October 26, 1984)wcrer
1984, Wolfe's Appliance and
Service Company at 140 East Chatham Street burns.
Fire is reported about 3:05 p.m. About 25
firefighters bring blaze under control shortly after arrival, but
smolder insulation creates thick brown smoke that pours from
building for more than an hour. Firefighters remain on scene
until 9:30 p.m., ensuring flames are out. Rich's Style Shop
suffers minor smoke damage. Police reroute traffic around
area for about two hours. (November 25, 1984)no26nov84
Land for future fire station (Station
4) purchased at 1401 Old Apex Road. (June 27, 1985)wcrer
Apparatus delivery: 1986
Dodge step van, used by newly created hazardous materials team.
Station 3 completed at 1807 Kildare Farm
- The one-story, 8,750 square-foot station (current size) is
located on a 1.24 acre parcel.wcrer
- Site is located one
mile farther south than first site purchased near Kildare Farm
Road and Cary Parkway, but abandoned at recommendation of Fire
Chief, who believes same is too close to Station 1.
- Station is dedicated on August 2, 1987.aaac
Fire department has 44 firefighters, two
employees in Fire Prevention, two Assistant Fire Chiefs, and one
Fire Chief, three engine companies and one ladder company, with
three firefighters assigned to each, as of August 2, 1987.
Current support vehicles:
||1987 Chevrolet, four-door
sedan, driven by Fire Chief
||1986 Chevrolet, 3/4 ton
carry-all, driven by Assistant Chief
||1986 Chevrolet, 3/4 ton
carry-all, driven by Assistant Chief
||1987 Chevrolet, 3/4 ton
carry-all, driven by Assistant Chief
||1987 Mercury Zephyr, driven by
||1980 Chevrolet Malibu, driven
by Fire Inspector
||1970 Ford, 1/2 ton pick-up
||1986 Dodge, 1 ton van, driven by Bulk Water
Sales Technician. Former haz-mat truck.
Apparatus deliveries: two 1987 Pierce Arrow pumpers
1250/500. Fleet #906, #906. New Engine 1, Engine 4. (February 20, 1988)cfdr
Apparatus delivery: 1988 Pierce
Arrow rear-mounted aerial platform, 1500/300/105'. Fleet #921. Alternately cited as 1987 model year. (April 15, 1998)cfdr, oh
First aerial ladder company placed
in service. Truck 4 at Station 4. (April-May 1988)
Rushing rainwater sweeps
13 year-old boy into drainage culvert while crossing creek
in woods near Nottingham Circle and Harlon Drive. Accident
occurs about 4:20 p.m. Water carries boy about 75 yards into
four-foot diameter culvert which gradually descends underground
and eventually runs under Interstate 40. Firefighters,
altered by boy's friend who runs for help, remove cover off of
catch basin and retrieve boy, who grabs crack in cement wall near
the catch basin. (July 10, 1988)rt11jul88
Page Mill apartments burn. One
firefighter is injured. (August 5?, 1988)noi
Cary TV and appliance burn.
Business is destroyed, set afire by burglar's torch. (September 20?,
Land for future fire station (Station
5) purchased at 2101 High House Road. (December 21, 1988)wcrer
Station 4 completed at 1401 Old
Apex Road. The one-story, 9,093 square-foot (current size)
building is located on a three-acre lot.wcrer
Fire department responds to 1513 emergencies for
year, averaging over four per day.cfdr
Building at 306 Middleton
Avenue burns. (January 13, 1989)noi
Fire department has 73 employees including one
full-time bulk water sales person, has two specialized, 18-person
teams (hazardous materials and fire investigation). Also, every firefighter a
certified Emergency Medical Technician as of September 9, 1989.
four engines, one ladder, one ladder / salvage
truck, and two engines in reserve.
Carolina Computer Store at 700
Western Boulevard Extension burns. Fire starts in
rear storeroom and guts business. Nearby York Sports Club
and Economy Dry Cleaners receive smoke damage. Fire alarm is
received at 1:45 a.m. About 30 firefighters respond. Damage to computer store's inventory is estimated at
$100,000. Businesses are located in Cary Village Square.
(September 15, 1989)no19sep89
Ace Hardware & Home
Center at Mayfair Plaza at Kildaire Farm and E. Maynard Roads
damaged by explosion and fire. Suspicious blaze starts
about 9:15 p.m. in enclosed area behind store. Explosion,
from 40-pound liquid propane tank used as forklift fuel supply,
spreads fire to rear of store. Fire is latest of several
suspicious fires around shopping center. (November 12, 1989)rt13nov89
Fire department begins providing EMT service.
Land for new Station 1 purchased at
1501 N. Harrison Avenue. (December 15, 1989)wcrer
- Four fire stations
- Land for fifth fire station purchased
- Four engine companies
- One aerial ladder truck
- One salvage/ladder truck [possibly unstaffed]
- Two engines in reserve
- Eighteen-member haz-mat team
- Eighteen-member fire investigation team
- Every firefighter is a certified EMT
- Seventy-three employees, including one full-time bulk water
- "Highly computerized," with computers in every station, and
computers used by 90% of employees. All fire reports, training
records, personnel records, fire flow data, hydrant maintenance
records, lock box records, payroll, street index, hose records,
manning levels, business identification numbers, business
inspections, clothing records, communications equipment
inventory, and Fire Chief's Monthly Operating Report kept on
- Operates an "extended 911 telephone service."
- Installing a computer-aided dispatch system, planned to be
operational December 1, 1989.
- Installing an 800mhz trunked radio system this fiscal year.
- Answered 1513 emergency calls last year.
- Fire lost of $0.6 million last year.
- Operating budget of $2.5 million.cfdr
New radio system installed, 800mhz "trunked" system.
Demographics. Town has
43,858 people and 30.25 square miles.
Town fire protection rating improved. The Class 6 rating is
changed to Class 3 by ISO Commercial Risk Services of Atlanta. The
improve is estimated to save commercial and rental property owners
$500,000 in fire insurance premiums. The improved rating represented
more than ten years of planning and spending to building new fire
stations, purchase better equipment, raise training standards, and
improve response time. The Class 3 rating matches Raleigh, Durham,
and Chapel Hill. The rating is effective March 1, 1990.no09feb90
Haz-mat team ceases operation. Stops operation circa 1990.oh
Medlin-Davis Cleaners at
MacGregor Village burns. Fire is reported about 2:00
p.m. and destroys three-fourths of the building's equipment. Kerr Drugs and Hot Shots Billiards & Pub also suffer damage.
(December 2, 1991)
Station 1 completed at
1501 North Harrison Ave.
- Constructed at cost of $1.3
million on 6.5 acres of land donated by SAS Institute Inc., on
condition that fire station is designed to "blend
architecturally" with nearby homes.aaac
- The one-story fire station has 11, 536 square-feet (current
Old Station 1 at 100 N. Academy
Street converted to Fire Administration Building.
- The one-story building with a full basement has 5,200
square-feet (current size), and sits on a 0.11 acre lot.wcrer
Apparatus delivery: 1993 Pierce
Lance heavy rescue, for use as service truck. Fleet #1904. Walk-around body.
No extrication tools, but equipped with mobile air refilling station. (April 22, 1993)cfdr
Apparatus delivery: 1994
Seagrave pumper, 1250/500. Fleet #1221. (April 22, 1993)cfdr
New truck company placed in service, Truck 4 at Station 4,
with 1993 Pierce service truck #1094. (April-May 1993)
Wayne House is appointed as Fire Chief. He was named interim fire
chief in March. House has been a Cary firefighter for twenty years,
and an assistant chief since the late 1980s. Before that, he served
as the town Fire Marshal.
Fire department has 68 firefighters, five fire
prevention officers, three assistant chiefs, and one Fire Chief.
Construction worker trapped after ten-foot
laying pipes for new water tower on Cary Parkway near Kildare Farm
Road is buried around 5:20 p.m. and rescued after six hours and
subsequently flown to Duke University Medical Center.
(June 13, 1994)no
Flowers Baking Company in the 200 block
of E. Chatham Street burns. Fire is reported at Capital
Vacuum at 209 E. Chatham Street about 6:45 p.m., but find the
building next door ablaze. Fire extensively damages the bakery's
warehouse and offices, and does smoke damage to adjacent businesses.
(January 11, 1995)no12jan95
1995 Seagrave/Marion heavy rescue, for use as service truck. Fleet
#1210. Walk-around body. (January 18,
Second truck company placed in service
as Truck 3 at Station 3, with 1995 Seagrave service truck
Chatham Creek rest home evacuated after a
room burns. One room is destroyed in the overnight blaze, and
69 elderly residents are evacuated. One resident and three staff
members are transported for smoke inhalation. Fire, smoke, and water
damage force the facility to close. (April 18, 1995)no19apr95
Major gas leak on Walnut Street
prompts evacuation of
more than 300 homes in Greenwood Acres and Pirates Cove, as well
as the Cary Towne Center. The leak occurs at 1:10 p.m. in the
middle of the street. The 12-inch main requires several hours
to repair, and creates major delays and miles of stopped traffic. (August
Delayed response to vehicle collision on Harrison Avenue prompts
changes to city-county responses. The accident on August 27 occurs
less than 100 yards from the Cary fire station, but outside of the
town limits. The fire department initially doesn't respond, after
verbally alerted. The Fire Chief immediately meets with area fire
chiefs, and they implement a closest-unit response policy, and no
matter if the emergency occurs inside or outside the town limits.
(August 1995)no02sep95, no06sep95, no08sep95
Parade apparatus project started.
preparation for upcoming fire department anniversary, private money
is raised to create a restored replica of the town's 1953 Seagrave
pumper. The project costs about $20,000.
Project was conceived as early as
December 1991, when Fire Chief Ned Perry was planning to ask the
Town Board for a trust account to collect donations. Fundraising was
announced in January 1993.
Work starts in/around 1995. A second,
matching pumper is purchased in New Hampshire. Body parts from the
town's pumper are in the restoration of the second truck's chassis.
A new engine is added, and, soon, a replacement transmission.
The work is done at Station 1, and
other locations, including Aero Glide, where their sandblasting
equipment is used on the weekends to remove the old paint and rust,
from the parts they removed. Crews also used their compression to
prime the parts, after they were cleaned with the sandblaster.
Project leader is Captain Phil
Roberts. Project members include Jesse House. no23jan93, no12dec91,
Land for future fire station (Station
7) purchased at 6900 Carpenter Fire Station Road. (February
Rescue company placed in service.
Rescue 2 at Station 2, with unit #922. Fire department assumes role of rescue provider
within town limits from the rescue squad, which ceases providing
the service. (June 30, 1996)oh, cfd
Apparatus delivery: 1983
International/Swab medium-duty rescue. Fleet #1293. Donated by Cary Area Rescue Squad, complete with rescue
and extrication equipment. (July 1, 1996)oh, cfdr
Apparatus delivery: 1996 Pierce Lance pumper, 1250/500.
Fleet #1289. (July 15, 1996)
Woodcreek apartments on
Woodcreek Dr. burn. Four
units destroyed in evening fire, which starts about 9:40 a.m.
Eight people are displaced. (October 30,
Apparatus note: 1983
International/Swab rescue placed in service as Rescue 2. Fleet
#1293. (August 26, 1996)cfdr
- Moved: 1993 Pierce Lance service truck, Truck 4 moved from
Station 1 to Station 4.
- Moved: Engine 5, from Station 4 to Station 5, upon opening
of the new station.
- Source: Oral histories.
Station 5 completed at 2101 High House
- Engine 5 relocates from Station 4.
- Facility includes
Police Department substation.
- The one-story, 11,051 square-foot (current size) fire
station sites occupies an 1.91 acre lot.wcrer
Confined-space rescue training started, and an equipment trailer
created, by August 1996.cfdr
Burning truck containing tanks of
bleach solution prompts evacuation of crowded YMCA. The
Monday evening incident occurs about 9:00 p.m. at 101 YMCA Drive.
There were no injuries, and the building is evacuated as a
precaution. The Raleigh Fire Department haz-mat team responds.
(January 27, 1997)no28jan97
Rex Wellness Center of
Cary suffers propane gas explosion. Two employees at the fitness center are severely
burned in the Fridya afternoon incident. Resulting fire is quickly extinguished.
(August 1, 1997)no02aug97, no03aug97
two 1997 Pierce Lance pumper, 1250/500. Fleet #1391, #1392. (August 11, 1997)cfdr
Fire department celebrates 75th
anniversary, with five engine companies, two truck companies, one
ladder company, and one rescue company employing 120 full-time
employees and an annual budget of $5.3 million. The
department serves a town of 82,000 people and 40 square miles.
(October 11, 1997)
- 1993 Pierce Lance service truck, from Station 4 to
Station 3. Now Truck 3.
- 1995 Seagrave/Marion service truck, from Station 3 to
Station 4. Now Truck 4.
- Source: Oral histories.
- Truck 4 removed from service.
- Truck 5 placed in service 1995 Seagrave Marion service
truck, former Truck 4.
- Engine 5 receives 1994 Seagrave Marauder pumper, former
Engine 4. (About November 1, 1998)
- Source: Oral Histories
1996 Mack/Craft Body Works service truck.
Land for future fire station (Station
6) purchased at 3609 Ten Ten Road. (January 12, 1999)wcrer
Pierce Lance Sky Arm rear-mounted aerial platform,
1500/300/100'. Fleet #1542. (September 2, 1999)
Second aerial ladder company placed in service. Ladder 3 at Station 3,
with 1999 Pierce. Other changes:
- Truck 3 removed from service.
- Truck 4 receives former Truck 3, 1993 Pierce Lance service
truck. (September-October 1999)cfdr, oh
Fire department receives international accreditation.
Demographics. Town has
94,536 people and 42.99 square miles.
Amber Woods apartments at
113 Ribbon Lane burn. Ten
units destroyed in early morning fire, reported about 3:30 a.m.
Twenty people are displaced. Mishandled fireplace ashes are blamed
as the cause. (January 19, 2000)no20jan00
2000 KME Excel pumper, 1250/500. Fleet #1706. New Engine 4.
(January 12, 2001)cfdr
2000 Ford F-550/KME light rescue truck.
2001 Ford F-550/KME light rescue truck.
Fleet #1770. New Rescue 4 (August 22, 2001)
company placed in service.
Rescue 4 at Station 4, with 2001 Ford/KME #1770. (August-September
Land for future fire station (Station
8) purchased at 408 Mills Park Drive. (May 17, 2001)wcrer
Station 6 opens at 3609
- Engine 3 relocated from Station 3.
- Truck 6 activated with 1993 Pierce Lance service truck.
- The one-story, 10-539 square-foot fire station occupies a
6.72 acre lot.wcrer
Apparatus delivery: 2002 Ford F-450/Reading/Anchor-Richey brush truck, 300/300.
Fleet #1827. (May 21, 2002)
Garden Supply Company at
1421 Old Apex Road burns. Afternoon fire takes over an hour
to control. Seven Cary units answer call, with mutual aid from
Western-Wake, Morrisville, Fairview, and Apex. Firefighters Tim
Gouge and Todd Dollar are slightly injured when Ladder 3 suffers a
collapse, the platform dropping 8 to 10 feet. They're transported
to Western Wake Medical Center. temporary
replacement truck is delivered within days. (June 4, 2002)no05jun02
2001 Pierce aerial platform, 2000/300/___.
replacement for Ladder 3. Loaned by Pierce, not titled to
the town. (June 2002)
Apparatus delivery: 2002
Pierce Dash pumper, 1250/500. Fleet #1834. Engine 1. (August
Fire Chief Wayne House retires after 29 years of service. He
joined the department in 1973, when the town's population was about
7,000, and the fire department had one station and twelve staff
members. He was promoted in 1993. Fire
department starts national search for replacement that includes
candidates from California, Florida, Texas, and Washington. (December 2002)no11apr03,
Deputy Fire Chief R. Allan Cain appointed
interim Fire Chief. (January 1, 2003)pr
Apparatus delivery: two 2003 Pierce Dash
- Fleet #1958. New Engine 5.
- Fleet #1959. New Engine 6.
- Features include 475 hp Detroit Diesel series 60
engines, Waterous pump, 8kw Harrison generators, hydraulic ladder racks, and EMS
cabinets in crew cab. (March 27, 2003)pm, cfdr, oh
Allan Cain, 39, appointed Fire Chief. He's been a member of the
department since 1994, when hired as Deputy Fire Chief. His previous positions included Fire Chief for
the City of Dunn, NC, from September 1989 to April 1994, and
Emergency Management (1988-89), Fire Chief (1988-89), and
Firefighter (1984-88) positions in Cumberland County. (April 10, 2003)pr,
Apparatus delivery: 2003 Pierce Dash rear-mount aerial platform, 1500/300/100'.
Fleet #1978. New Ladder 1. (May
North Carolina Urban Search and Rescue (USAR) Task Force 8 placed in
service. It is comprised of members and equipment from Raleigh,
Durham, Chapel Hill, and Cary fire departments.
FD timeline for detailed history. (September 2003)
2003 Pierce Dash rear-mount aerial platform, 1500/300/100'.
Fleet #1997. New Ladder 3. (October 9, 2003)cfdr
Apparatus delivery: 2004
Pierce Dash platform ladder. Fleet #2052. New Ladder 5. (March 20, 2004.)cfdr, oh
Third ladder company placed in
service, Ladder 5 at Station 5.
- Truck 5 removed from service.
- Truck 7 placed in service at
Station 5, with 1995 Seagrave service truck #1210. (March-April 2004)cfdr, oh
Apparatus disposal: 1988
Pierce aerial platform #921 sold. Old Ladder 1. Purchased by Buis Creek,
NC. (April 28, 2004)cfdr
Light plane crashes into small lake
near Brampton Moors apartments off W. Chatham Street in
Cary. The Mooney M20M was on approach to RDU, having made two
aborted attempts to land. Five miles from the airport, it veers off
course, and crashes at 3:20 p.m. The plane clips trees and barely
misses the apartment buildings before skidding on the grass,
striking the lake and breaking apart. Fragments land just twenty
feet from buildings. Two occupants are aboard, both killed. At
least one neighbor witnesses the crash, and jumps in the water,
hoping to find survivors. Responders locate the downed aircraft at
3:45 p.m. Rescuers use diving equipment to locate the victim(s) in
approximately eight feet of water. Apex Fire Department dive team
NTSB reports. (May 3, 2004)ntsb, wral?05may04, no04may04
USAR mission: Task Force 8
deployed to Macon County, to assist with Hurricane Ivan damage.
Major fire at Westover Hills apartments.
Twelve of twenty-four units destroyed. One firefighter transported with
injuries, as part of the building structure falls on him. (Thursday of/before
January 19, 2006)wral19jan0606
Apparatus delivery: 2006 Pierce Dash pumper, 1250/500.
Fleet #2223. (January 23, 2006)cfdr
Town starts program to organize a Community Emergency Response Team (CERT),
to train citizens to help others in their communities for the first three days
of disasters such as hurricanes, tornados, floods, winter storms, or man-made
calamites. (July 2006)no07juil06
Fire department gives away 1000 smoke alarms with batteries
included, as part of annual campaign encouraging people to change
their smoke alarm batteries at the end of Daylight Savings Time. The
program is part of the national "Change Your Clock, Change Your
Battery" campaign. (October 2006.)no30oct06
Major fire on Preston Grove Avenue. Twenty-three
people displaced. Over two hours to contain.
See news story.
(January 3, 2007)wral
(?) at New Kent Village Condos. Two units destroyed, twelve
news story. (March 23, 2007)wral
Station 7 opens at 6900 Carpenter Fire Station Road.
- Engine 7 relocates from Station 5.
- Truck 7
relocates from Station 4.
- The 17,021 square-foot facility occupies a 2.95 acre lot.
- The $4.5 million facility also houses Morrisville Fire Station
3 and their Engine 3.
- The one-story building features offices, a
training room, living and sleeping quarters, and three drive-through
- The construction contract was awarded on July 28,
2005, to Centurion Construction of Raleigh. (April 2007)mjl-blog,
Apparatus disposal: 1982
Ford/Pierce pumper, fleet #905 sold. (July 17, 2007)cfdr
USAR mission: Task Force 8
deployed to Clayton, for small plane crash into commercial building.
Punctured gas line ignites and burns
in the roadway at the intersection of Kildaire Farm and Tryon roads.
Fire starts about 11:00 a.m. when construction workers strike an
eight-inch gas main. The crew safely evacuated before ignition. The
flames were visible from nearby Cary Fire Station 3. Cary, Fairview, Swift Creek, Western Wake, and Raleigh
fire departments respond.
Medical support is provided by Cary, Apex, and Wake County EMS. The
line is capped just after 5:00 p.m. (October 10, 2007)12no2007,
Apparatus delivery: 2007 Ford F-550/Kanphide swift-water rescue unit, USAR 803.
delivery: 2008 Pierce Velocity rear-mounted aerial ladder,
2008 Pierce Velocity walk-around heavy rescue.
- Fleet #2585.
- New Truck 7.
- Replaces 1995 Seagrave service truck, fleet #1210. (June 27, 2008)cfdr
company placed in service. Truck 6 at Station 6 with 2008
Pierce ladder #2589. (June/July 2008)
Fire department begins contracted coverage
of Cary Suburban Fire District, unincorporated areas east of the
town. The area is the former Yrac Fire District and was protected by
Western Wake Fire Department. Their Station 2, the old Yrac fire
station, closed on June 30. (July 1, 2008)
Two alarms at
1232 Kilmory Drive. Callers report fire showing in the front of the
structure and a second alarm is requested while units are en route.
Engine 4 arrives with fire showing through the roof, front, and rear
of a split-level frame residence with 1,317 square-feet. Built in
1978. Dispatched about 10:15 a.m., the fire was reported controlled
within about 20 minutes. Ladder 3 is
subsequently raised during overhaul. Units on scene include E4, E3, E5,
E_, L3, L5, T7, R2, R4, B2, B1, Apex E3, two Cary EMS
units, Cary EMS District 5, and WC 1. (December 14, 2008)mjl-blog
Seagrave/Marion service truck, fleet #1210 sold. Purchased by Parkway FD in Avery County.
(December 11, 2008)cfdr
Mutual aid to Western Wake FD,
major motor-vehicle accident on outbound Wade Avenue at Interstate
40. Five vehicles including overturned tractor-trailer truck
carrying garbage, that burns and ignites woods fire. (Monday
on/before January 26, 2009)wral26jan09
USAR mission. Task Force 8
deployed to Garner, for explosion and fire at ConAgra Foods. (June
Two alarms at retirement home at 10820 Penny
Road. Dispatched as a commercial fire
alarm at 3:01 p.m. for E6, E3, L5, B1. Upgraded to structure fire
shortly after dispatch, with Battalion 1 requesting second alarm on
arrival. Engine 6 arriving at a three-story, wood-frame retirement
home with 99,330 square-feet. Built 2003. Working fire in laundry
room on first floor. Controlled without extension. Evacuation of
first floor residents performed, with second and third floors
sheltered in place. Extended salvage and overhaul, with room-by-room
ventilation. Dispatched about 3:06 p.m. Units included E6, E3 (using
T6), E2, L5, L1, T7, R4, B1, Fairview E1, Car 1; EMS 42, 41, D2, D5.
(September 11, 1990)mjl-blog
two 2010 Pierce Velocity pumpers, 1500/500/30/30. Fleet #2766, #2767. New Engine 3, Engine 7. (December 21, 2009)cfdr
Engineering evaluation of Station 2
is conducted, and temporary repairs are made to extended the
service life of the facility three to five years.
Demographics. Town has 135,264 people and between
42.99 and 56.36 square miles.
Apparatus delivery: 2010 Pierce Velocity pumper, 1500/500/30/30.
Fleet #2787. New Engine 1.
(March 1, 2010.)cfdr
Two alarms at 8600 Macedonia Lake
Drive. Townhome under construction. Engine 3 arriving with
heavy fire conditions. Ladder 3 deployed. Partial collapse of
structure. First alarm: E3, E2, T6, L3, B1, Swift Creek. Second
alarm: E6, L1, B2. Others? Coverage included Western Wake to Cary
Station 2. Crews were on scene into the morning. (March 26, 2010)mjl-blog
Two alarms at 102 and 104 Bell Arthur
Drive. Arriving chief officer with working fires at two
houses. Second alarm requested on arrival. Interior attacks for
both. Mutual aid from Apex and Morrisville. Coverage includes
Durham Highway P1 to Morrisville Sta 1, Parkwood ladder and
Battalion to Cary Sta 4, and Western Wake P196 to Cary Sta 1. Dispatched about 7:20 p.m. Controlled at 7:49 p.m.
Temperature about 85 degrees, humidity about 70%. Cause suspected as
lightning. Units on scene include Cary E4, E5, E2, E7, L5, L3, T7,
R4, B2, B1, Car 3; Apex E3, L3; Morrisville E1; EMS 52, 54, 41, D5,
D2, M91, T1; WC1. (June 15, 2010)mjl-blog
Harrison Motel at 607 E. Chatham Street
burns. The single-story building contains six units, and is
one of three motel buildings on the property. The fire destroys
three of the rooms. (September 3, 2010)no04sep10
- Truck 6 renamed Ladder 6.
- Truck 7 renamed Rescue 7. (February 29, 2011)
USAR mission. Task Force 8 mobilized to
respond after tornado in Raleigh on April 16. USAR personnel are used to search
damaged buildings, over the course of twenty-four (or more) hours. (April
Two alarms at retirement home at 6590 Tryon
Fifteen paramedic ambulances are among
the many resources that respond to a two-alarm structure fire and
subsequent mass causality incident at a Cary nursing home. It's
dispatched at 3:27 p.m. with an additional caller reporting
fire in a room. Second alarm is dispatched while units are en route. Engine 3
arrives with nothing showing from the exterior of
a one-story, brick-and-frame residential medical facility with
48,842 square-feet. Built in 1991.
Engine 3 personnel find fire in a
patient's room, contained to that room and quickly controlled.
The sprinkler system
also activates. Crews also assist with evacuation and outdoor care
of the 105 patients evacuated from inside the facility. They are outside the
building for about 20 minutes, staged in three or more parking lot
and lawn locations. Shuttle buses are requested, for possible
relocation. Patients are returned to building, with officials
evaluating if later relocation is needed.
Second alarm EMS is dispatched.
Additional ambulances are required for treatment and transport of six victims with
minor injuries (smoke, heat): three patients and three workers.
Additional resources are also required for medical monitoring and rehab
of responders, and subsequent rehab of the rehab personnel. Outdoor
air temperature is in the mid 90s. Command includes medical branch located
in front of structure. Staging in driveway and nearby parking lot.
Additional medical staging in office complex at corner of Tryon Road
and Kildaire Parkway. Shuttle buses are moved to nearby church parking
Units on scene include Cary E3, E6,
E4, E2, L3, L6, L1, R2, B1, B2; Swift Creek E3, B27; EMS 51, EMS 42, EMS 41, EMS 8, EMS 52, EMS 4, EMS 32, EMS 38,
EMS 35, EMS 17, EMS 9, EMS 5, EMS 35, EMS 55, EMS 31, D5, D2, D1,
M94, T1, Evac1, Chief 100. Plus Wake County Fire Services, Wake
County EM, and Cary Police. (July 30, 2011)mjl-blog
USAR mission. Task Force 8
deployed ahead of Hurricane Irene. (August 26, 2011)
2011 Pierce Velocity rear-mounted aerial platform,
Apparatus delivery: two 2011 Pierce Velocity walk-around heavy rescues.
- Fleet #2952, #2953.
- New Rescue 2, Rescue 4
- Replace 2000 and 2001 Ford/KME light rescues.
- Both delivered January 18 (CFD) or January 19 (LW), 2012.
Land for for future fire station
(Station 2) purchased at 601 E. Chatham Street. The site is
occupied with a house. (April 13, 2012)wcrer
Apparatus disposal: 1995
Mack/Craft service truck sold. Purchased by Carolina Trace FD in Lee County.
(August 17, 2012)cfdr, lw
Engine 8 placed in service. The company is housed at Station 7, and
relocates during daytime hours to the territory of Station 8, which
is under construction. They operate a 2002 Pierce Dash pumper.
(April 8, 2013)mjl-blog
Land for for future fire station
(Station 9) purchased at 1427 Walnut Street. The site is
occupied by a church. (April 13, 2012)wcrer
Cary Fire Department withdraws
from NC USAR Task Force 8. (May 2013)oh
Station 8 opens at 408 Mills Park
Engine 8 relocated from Station 7. The
14,410 square-foot facility includes a
1,160 square-foot satellite police station, designed for daytime
usage. The design includes accommodations for a future ladder
company. It's the first two-story fire station for the town,
includes two fire poles, and has three drive-through apparatus bays.
The facility occupies part of a 34.93 acre parcel.
Other features include a stained glass
public art feature in the station's stair tower, and numerous
environmentally friend aspects. It's the town's first "green-built"
project and includes solar-assisted hot water heating,
energy-efficient site lighting and HVAC, recycled content for
building elements, photovoltaic panels on the roof to collect and
store solar energy, and plumbing tied to the town's reclaimed water
The facility is dedicated on June 19, 2013.
It was designed by ADW Architects in Charlotte, and the builder is
AIM Construction of Cary.
(May/June 2013)mjl-blog, cfd
Major fire (?) at Twin Oaks Villas
townhomes. Sunday evening fire starts shortly after 10:00
p.m. at 215 Twin Oaks Place. Fire spreads through four units, one of
which is empty, and displaces three families. (June 16, 2013)wral16junt13
Major fire (?) on Kristin Court.
Friday night part starts in the chimney at 214 Kristin Court,
and spreads to two adjoining unis. (October 25, 2013)wral25oct13
Two alarms at 112 South Atley Drive.
The fire was reported about 10:30 p.m.
The two-story, wood-frame, three-family dwelling measured 3,232
square-feet. It was built in 1986. Heavy fire through the roof was
reported by callers. A second alarm was requested as units were en
route. All occupants escaped without injury, and three pets were
also saved. The first alarm assignment was E1, E2, L1, L3, R1, B1,
and Morrisville as auto-aid. The second-alarm assignment was E4, E3,
L5, B2, and Car 3. Special called units were E5 and L6 for relief,
and R4 and Brush 9 for fire watch. EMS units were EMS 51, EMS 4, EMS
8, and D5. Coverage during the fire included Western Wake Engine 191
at Station 1. The following morning, L3, Brush 9, and B2 were
on scene, assisting the Wake County fire investigators.
(November 27, 2013)mjl-blog
Captain Jon F. Schondelmayer dies off-duty, after working a busy
shift, and while working with the Swift Creek Fire Department.
Schondelmayer, 44, is found unresponsive at his home. He had begun
to feel ill while at the Swift Creek fire station. At about 11:30
a.m., he told his crew that he was going home to get some medicine
and return to the station.
His crew became concerned when he left
and called him on his cell phone to see how he was doing. At the
same time, a Swift Creek firefighter was sent to his residence.
While on the telephone, Schondelmayer said that didn't feel well and
When the other firefighter arrived at
the residence, he found Schondelmayer unresponsive. The Swift Creek
firefighter began rendering medical aid and contacted his company at
the fire station for assistance. Emergency responders worked for 50
minutes to try to revive Schondelmayer, but he passed away.
Schondelmayer had just come off of a
busy shift in Cary that included several emergency response runs.
He was a 19-year veteran of the Cary Fire Department, and had worked
with Swift Creek for 18 years. His memorial service was conducted on
Monday, December 23, at Colonial Baptist Church in Cary. Following
the service, his body was carried to Brown-Wynne Funeral Home in
During the funeral, six fire
departments provided coverage at Cary's fire stations:
- Station 1 - Garner Engine
- Station 2 - Raleigh Squad 14
- Station 3 - Raleigh Engine 4, Cary
- Station 4 - Apex, Cary Rescue 4
- Station 5 - Durham Engine 12, Cary Ladder 5
- Station 6 - Fairview
- Station 7 - Morrisville
- Station 8 - Durham
2014 Pierce Velocity pumper, 1500/500.
Apparatus delivery: 2014 Pierce Velocity walk-around heavy rescue.
- Fleet #81.
- New Rescue 7. Replaces 2008 Pierce
- Delivered May 14, 2014 (LW). Alt. delivery date May
16. (CFD)cfdr, lw
Insurance Services Office (ISO) improves Cary's fire rating
from Class 3 to Class 1.
(July 1, 2015)mjl-blog
disposal: 1993 Pierce Lance service truck, fleet #1094 sold. Purchased by Stem FD in Granville County.
(May 11, 2015)cfdr
Apparatus disposal: 1996 Pierce
Lance pumper, fleet #1289 sold. (July 28, 2015)cfdr
Two alarms on Wellington Ridge Loop.
The fire is reported about 7:20 p.m. Arriving units find
heavy fire in the rear of the building, and call a second alarm.
Fire is controlled within about thirty minutes. At least two
apartments are heavily damaged. Thirteen people and five pets are
evacuated. (August 5, 2015)wtvd05aug15
Apparatus delivery: 2015 Pierce
Velocity pumper, 1500/500.
Fleet #198. (September
Two alarms at On the Border restaurant at 1102 Walnut Street.
Engine 2 arriving with heavy fire showing from the exterior patio of
a one-story, brick-and-wood restaurant with 6,869 square feet. Built
Fire extending to interior dining room and other interior spaces.
Attack with two-inch line from Engine 2, plus additional hand lines.
Ladder 1 positioned on Walnut Street. Ladder 3 positioned and
deployed (but no water flowed) in parking lot, behind structure.
Command and medical also located in parking lot. One hydrant caught,
also in the parking lot.
Dispatched 12:16 a.m. Contained within 15-20 minutes. Controlled
1:30 p.m. Extended overhaul, with units on scene for a number of
hours. Building unoccupied at the time of fire, and had been vacated
about thirty minutes prior.
First alarm was E2, E4, E3, L3, R2, B1, and Swift Creek Engine 1.
Second alarm was E1, L1, B2, and Car 3.1 Plus WC1 for investigation.
Medical with EMS 51, EMS 8, EMS 4, M91, and T1. (November 19, 2015)mjl-blog
Station 2 relocated to 601 E. Chatham Street.
The project is driven by several
factors: the condition of the Maynard Road building and its
foundation, the limited space for two companies and personnel, and
that their location doesn't meet the town's response time goals in
northern parts of its service area.
The estimated $8,172,000 facility
included funding from a 2012 Community Investment Bonds referendum,
with $6,450,000 specifically supporting construction. Costs included
$575,000 for site acquisition, $522,000 (estimated) for design,
$625,000 for construction administration, and $6,450,000 (estimated)
The 13,708 square-foot facility
occupies a 1.62 acre lot.
A groundbreaking ceremony is held on
December 2, 2014. Engine 2 and Rescue 2 are relocated on December
14, 2015. The new
station is dedicated
on December 18, 2015.
Station 9 opened at old Station 2 at 875
S. E. Maynard Road.
Engine 9 placed in service on the same
day as Engine 2 and Rescue 2 are moved to their new quarters. The
new/old fire station is temporary facility, with new engine house
planned at 1427 Walnut Street, on property owned by town. (December
Apparatus notes: First quint
company placed in service as Engine 6, along with other changes:
- Engine 6 removed from service.
- Ladder 6 converted to a quint company and renamed Engine 6.
- Rescue 4 moved to Station 6. (December 14, 2015)
Major apartment fire. Twenty-three people
displaced. See news
story. (January 3, 2016)wral
Woodbridge Apartments burn.
See news story. About 20 people displaced. (May 25, 2016)wral26may16
Two alarms at Hyde Park Apartments.
Overnight fire displays 34 people, and eight apartments are uninhabitable.
See news story. (September 7, 2016)no08sep16
Apparatus delivery: 2017
Pierce Enforcer pumper, 1500/500. Fleet #303. New Engine 5.
- Delivered September 21. Placed in service October 31, 2017.cfdr,
See Wake County Fire Chiefs
See Cary Fire Department Fleet History (pdf).
Raleigh Fire Museum photo albums.
||Calvin Beck, History of Cary Fire
||Cary Fireman's Day records
||Fire or Alarm Record
||Legeros Fire Blog
||News and Observer
||News and Observer Index
||NC Secretary of State
||The State Magazine
||Wake County Fireman's Association records
||Wake County real estate records
||Yrac Fire Department records
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