History

1945 The community of Miami Villa, Wayne Twp. (located along the Miami River near Chambersburg and Rip Rap Rds.) recognized the need to protect the community from fire and decided that a Fire Department should be developed. With funding non-existent, donations were sought and the first piece of apparatus, a soda acid truck, was bought from the City of Vandalia for $500. This little volunteer Fire Department assumed the responsibility for not only providing fire protection for the community of the Miami Villas but also responding to fires throughout rural Wayne Township. When it was quickly realized that a building was needed to store this new piece of apparatus, Station 1 was built by volunteers on Rip Rap Rd. south of Chambersburg Rd. Volunteers were notified of fires by the use of a loud whistle on top the Fire Station. Today this building is still standing and is used by the Huber Heights Street Department.
1947 A fundraiser was held and $1000 was raised to purchase the first actual firepumper in 1948. During this time volunteerism certainly had a different meaning - volunteers paid $25 to belong to the Department and $3 in annual dues. 1955 Wayne Rescue was founded. The care administered was rather primitive, compared to today’s standards, but it certainly filled the need providing rapid transport to a receiving hospital for an ill or injured citizen. At around this same time a developer, Charles Huber, entered the community with great ambitions to build a community of brick homes.
1956 The first Huber home was built and construction did not stop until the early 1990’s when just over 10,000 single-family homes, apartments, and condominiums were standing. During this time both the Fire Department and Wayne Rescue were private organizations and received no funding from the Township.
1960 The Fire Department approached the Township and requested they take over Township Fire Department responsibilities. This was mainly due to funding - local donations as well as fundraisers were not enough to sustain the Fire Department for such a rapidly growing community. The manner in which volunteers were now notified had improved with the utilization of both the whistle on top the station and a phone notification system which called all volunteers simultaneously and alerted them of the emergency location. Additionally, dispatching was handled from the homes of two citizens in the Township who alternated in monitoring the fire phone for any emergencies.
1961 Station 2 was built at the intersection of Brandt Pk. and Longford Rd. This facility was built to not only accommodate the Fire Department but also Township offices. Additionally, another pumper was purchased around that same time along with a Rescue Van and a 1500-gallon tanker shortly thereafter.
1963 A 1000-gallon tanker-pumper was purchased (another purchased in 1968).
1964 Jim Officer was appointed Fire Chief and held that position until July 1971.
1969 Funding was becoming more of a challenge for Wayne Rescue. Local fundraisers and door-to-door donations were not enough to keep this essential part of the community viable. As a result, the Township acquired Wayne Rescue and merged it with the Fire Department.
1970 Wayne Township continued to grow throughout the 1970’s being viewed as the most rapidly growing community throughout Ohio in the mid 70’s.
1971 In July, with Jim Officer resigning as Fire Chief, Assistant Fire Chief Jim Barlow was appointed Fire Chief and held this position for approximately 4 months. Robert Swick was appointed Acting Fire Chief and in late November 1971 was made Fire Chief. Chief Swick held this position until 1974.
1972 In the early 1970s the fire service in America underwent a radical change. With the popular hit television series “Emergency” bringing modern-day hospital emergency rooms into everyone’s living room, it was soon the desire of every community to have life-saving “paramedics” in their own community. With fire stations strategically placed throughout communities, as well as firefighters already providing citizens with minor first aid treatment and rescue, it was a logical fit for the fire service to embrace this philosophy and adopt this new service. Wayne Township was no exception. The Fire Department sent a small number of volunteers to Good Samaritan Hospital to receive instruction from the only Paramedic Education program in the area. By 1973 these volunteers were certified by the Montgomery County Health Department as Paramedics. Unlike today, any advanced procedure required permission from a hospital Emergency Room physician. Wayne Township, along with a few other Fire Departments, was viewed as one of the leaders in the region with this new advanced training.
1973 With the Township growing rapidly and the complexities of the fire service along with service demand from the community increasing, the Trustees decided to look into the feasibility of hiring the Township’s first full-time Fire Chief.
1974 Trustees hired the first full-time Fire Chief, George Buck Sr. That same year Station 3 was built on Old Troy Pk. immediately south of Taylorsville Rd. Station 1 was closed due to low emergency activity in that predominantly rural area. Chief Buck soon recognized that an all-volunteer department was presented with its greatest challenge - providing coverage during the day when most volunteers were at full-time jobs. Two full-time paramedics were hired utilizing Township funding, along with three full-time firefighters using CETA (Comprehensive Employment and Training Act) funding from the Federal Government. With daytime coverage presenting the greatest challenge in regard to staffing, these five individuals, along with the Fire Chief, worked during the day providing basic coverage from 8 am to 5 pm.
1976 George Buck left Wayne Twp. to become the Chief of the Thornton Colorado Fire Department. Deputy Chief Larry Dalton assumed the role of Interim Fire Chief. In April of that same year Thomas Grile was hired as the new Township Fire Chief and Chief Dalton resumed the role of Deputy Chief. Chief Grile also soon recognized that providing daytime coverage was continuing to be a great challenge with the Township growing at such a rapid pace.
1977 On a Sunday afternoon in March an apartment fire occurred on Broomall St. Weekend coverage for the Township was provided by volunteers and, as is the case with any volunteer fire department, the response was delayed. Heavy fire damage destroyed this apartment building and by the next day Chief Grile recommended to the Township Trustees that a community the size of Wayne Township needed to offer improved service delivery and could not continue to rely on volunteer coverage. The Trustees agreed and based upon Chief Grile’s recommendation hired four Firefighter/Paramedics and a Fire Inspector – all began working by late April. These new hires allowed for three personnel to be assigned to work a 24-hour shift with 48 hours off, thus beginning the 24/48 coverage that exists today. Additionally, all the department volunteers were required to spend a minimum of 24 hours each month to supplement the three full-time personnel working the 24/48 work shift. The goal was to staff a medic unit with two personnel and an engine with at least three personnel. The volunteers were each given a small hourly stipend to pay for time spent at the fire station. In 1978 three additional personnel were hired; another three hired in 1979.
1981 After several years of fending off annexation from the City of Dayton the citizens of Wayne Township voted to incorporate and become the City of Huber Heights. The Fire Department was now recognized as the Huber Heights Fire Department. Throughout the early 1980’s additional personnel were hired each year that allowed for a staffing level of eight full-time personnel supplemented by volunteers working part-time in the stations. With increased emergency activity, as well as the need for supervision on each shift, three personnel were promoted to the rank of Shift Battalion Chief to oversee the day-to-day operations on each 24 hour shift. Throughout the 1980’s Huber Heights was viewed by many in the region as a leader due to innovative and creative ideas such as: automatic mutual aid agreements formed with neighboring departments; introduction of protective clothing as the standard, 800 mhz communications as well as computerization throughout the Fire Department; and reduction of the Insurance Services Offices fire rating from a 6 to a 2 making the Department the lowest in the state.
1987 As emergency activity continued to increase annually, and the system of having volunteers work in the fire house became less and less efficient, Chief Grile proposed to the City Council the hiring of 15 part-time personnel who would work the 24/48 work schedule to supplement the eight full-time personnel already working that schedule. What made this approach unique was that in each of the next three years five of these part-time personnel would each be hired in a fulltime capacity. Also that year a rather unique approach to regionalization occurred - Huber Heights and the City of Dayton cohabitated Station 12 in Dayton along Huber Heights most southern border. Both organizations responded into each community regardless of any political boundaries. This program continued until 1993 when it was discontinued due to Huber Heights growing to the north and the need to relocate Huber Heights personnel to satisfy the increased service demand in this area.
1991 All part-time personnel were now hired full-time with the full-time ranks of the Fire Department now at 42.
1994 Citizens approved a tax increase to rebuild Station 22 and completely remodel Station 23.
1996 Both stations were completed and the City had two modern fire stations to provide service to a growing Huber Heights community.
1998 Chief Grile retired after 22 years of service and Battalion Chief Carl Reedy assumed the role of Fire Chief. With increased service demand from the citizens and the need to improve service, a creative method of funding was needed. It was decided that billing for EMS service could provide enough revenue to hire additional personnel to meet the increased service demand.
1999 Six additional Firefighter/Paramedics, one Training Officer, one Fire Prevention Specialist and one additional Clerical staff were hired.
2002 Fire Chief Carl Reedy retired and Battalion Chief Daniel Yoe was appointed as Interim Fire Chief. Chief Yoe assumed this position until the summer of 2003.
2003 Bill Ford, Fire Chief of the Dayton Airport, was appointed Fire Chief. Bill Ford served as Fire Chief until mid-2008 when he retired.
2008 Battalion Chief Kevin Foley assumed the role as Interim Fire Chief until midDecember 2008, when Battalion Chief Robert Maimone was appointed Fire Chief.
2009 The Huber Heights Fire Division continues to provide recognized high-level service delivery to the community and region. Known throughout the region as aggressive in fire suppression, rescue and emergency pre-hospital care, Huber Heights continues to lead the area in all aspects of modern day fire department operations. As in the past, the Fire Division continues to confront many challenges ranging from budgetary issues to increased service demand from the community. In one respect nothing has changed as each of these challenges and issues must be addressed. In another respect everything has changed as the entire landscape of the community, as well as the Fire Department, is certainly different. One thing remains the same - the community continues to support the Fire Division and the men and women of the organization continue to meet the service demands of the community.

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