THE HISTORY OF THE
YOE FIRE CO. NO. 1
In the Year 1899 a group of men in the small borough of Yoe, Pennsylvania decided that the town was in need of a Fire Department. On Saturday evening December 9, 1899, a large number of people gathered together in the Yoe Band Hall for the purpose of formally organizing the Citizens Fire and Hose Company #1. Their membership totaled 72. On the same date the following Officers were elected to serve until January 8, 1901:
J.R. Snyder, President
D.R. Overmiller, Vice-President
W.M. Anstine, Secretary
E.G. Utz, Asst. Secretary
S.A. Slenker, Treasurer
G.A. Kohler, Trustee for 3 years
C.S. Snyder, Trustee for 2 years
B.F. Keller, trustee for 1 year
On December 15, 1899, the Citizens Fire and Hose Company #1, Yoe Pa. filed in the office of the York County Court of Common Pleas a Charter for incorporation which was certified on January 8, 1900.
The department's first piece of fire suppression equipment was a Hand Drawn Hose and Chemical Carriage being purchased in March of 1900. The first fire station was a frame building located parallel to the Ma and Pa Railroad, on the N.E. corner of Pennsylvania Ave. and Main St. There is no accurate documentation of the following, but the building is said to have been moved to the edge of town on West Water Street near the Wallena Tobacco Factory.
In 1911 a brick 2 1/2 story 30 x 60 structure was built on the West side of Main Street just North of Broad Street at a cost of $3,850.00. The cast iron letters near the very top face indicated Citizens Fire and Hose Co. #1, Yoe, PA. It is unknown whether the building was built solely with Borough funds or if the Fire Department helped support the project. In the early years, the fire department helped purchase coal for heat and the borough paid for hose and other types of fire gear. The building had restroom facilities on the second floor, along with two large rooms, one for meetings and the other for social activities. Fire suppression, as we know it today, was far from effective in the early years. The Fire Companies of the neighboring towns, primarily Dallastown and Red Lion, supported each other in their times of need. On one occasion, the Yoe Organization was called upon to assist Red Lion. It was said to have taken more than an hour for them to muster the man power and pull the carriage to the aid of their neighbors.
In March of 1922, a Purchasing Committee was formed with instructions to "Buy a motorized fire truck in the $4,000.00 to $6,000.00 range. All Ford Trucks were to be eliminated from consideration."
On May 9, 1922 a Child Apparatus on a Reo Chassis was purchased for $4,395.00. At the same time, it was motioned to sell the carriage at the best offer. The carriage would in fact never be sold, and due to housing requirements in the middle 1950's, it was moved to a storage garage just west of the fire hall. As the condition of the garage deteriorated, so did the carriage. The significance of properly maintaining this original piece of fire equipment was completely overlooked and it eventually deteriorated to the point at which the department felt they had no choice but to destroy it. Some time between 1955 and 1957, it was stripped of its beautiful stained glass kerosene lights and lanterns, rolled to an open area near the edge of town and burned on a rubbish pile. The greatness of this loss would not be realized until years later.
In August of 1922, a motion was passed by the Department to allow women to join as social members, and in July of 1923, after much department effort had been expended a Fire Protection plan called "The Community and Farmer Co-Op" failed . For the next 5 years and on through the depression, there were few, if any, changes to the department. Lack of interest, probably due to most everyone's personal struggles, took the department to the edge of dissolving. During the period of 1930-1933, only quarterly meetings were held, one notably being next door, at the home of Samuel C. Neff, an officer and local grocer, because there was no heat at the Fire Hall.
On February 14, 1933, the previous years' officials were reinstalled, but by April 10, 1934, no meetings had been held. On May 8, 1934, five Officers met and "After a discussion on lack of interest", the present Officers of the company resigned. The Secretary was instructed to notify the citizens of the town in regards to continuing the organization of the fire company. The balance in the treasury was $11.74 and $633.60 in the Relief Fund.
In June of 1934, 22 citizens of the town, in addition to the regular members present, attended and conducted a reorganization meeting. Palmer Snyder and Purd Glatfelter were elected respectively to the positions of President and Chief. They would remain in these positions until January 1940.
On April 9, 1935, the Department voted to attend church services, as a body, once a year, to commence with one at Salem United Brethren Church.
In October of 1935, Yoe Borough Council instructed the Department to purchase new fire hose. It was never purchased as borough officials failed to release sufficient funds to do so.
On November 10, 1936, "It was decided to join the York County Co-Operative Firefighting Association for protection of all the towns around Yoe and also our own town". A discussion was also held for the "Good of the Company"; six members were present. Balance in the treasury was $145.43.
Between May of 1938 and July of 1939, there were no recorded meetings.
On January 15, 1940, Harry Musser and Clifford Neff respectively assumed the positions of President and Fire Chief.
Between 1940 and 1947 the record keeping was quite poor. In addition, 30 years later (1977), a theft of records, which were never found, would prove to be one of the most devastating losses to the department.
On June 28, 1941, The department attended the 36th Anniversary Celebration and Parade of the Laurel Fire Co., Windsor, PA.
On Aug. 11, 1941 they received delivery of a used 1927 American LaFrance 500 GPM pumper which was purchased from Mt. Joy Fire Company. It had a 6 cylinder Cosmopolitan engine.
"A number of Firemen attended the Fire School at Lewistown, PA." on Sept. 13, 1943.
On February 19, 1948, The department reincorporated and changed its' name to Yoe Fire Company.
In the summer of 1948, a town resident, Joseph A. Strobeck attended a Fire Co. meeting and posed a question as to whether or not the fire company had enough hose to reach his house on Fourth Street if an emergency arose. No one in the department could answer his question. As a concerned citizen, he continued to attend every meeting thereafter, until January 1949 at which time he and Charles Gladfelter respectively became the new President and Fire Chief of the department.
The next 10 years would reveal the intellect, insight, and ability of the men and women who were actively involved. They molded and transformed the department into one of pride and distinction. The war, being over only a few years, had brought forth new fire fighting techniques such as “high pressure fog” and “all wheel drive equipment”.
In the Summer of 1950 Seven Valley's Fire Department was asked to demonstrate its Four Wheel Drive fire apparatus to the Yoe Department, and on August 22, 1950 an order was placed with the Clintonville, Wisconsin Company for a unit with a 130 hp 6 cyl. engine, and a 500 gpm 3-stage pump with high pressure fog. Since Liberty of North York was the first company to purchase such a unit. Yoe’s FWD would become the third unit of its type to be placed into county service. For more visibility the department voted on a change of its colors from the traditional red to all white.
In February of 1951 the fire police were activated and flashlights, badges, whistles, and capes are purchased from monies acquired through the paper drive fund. Civil Defense airplane spotters were also assigned.
By March 1951 the 1913 Reo would be sold to Klinedinst Brothers, 857 East King Street, York for $102.50.In later years it was recognized as a loss of our apparatus heritage but the unit was never to be found and returned.
April 1951 found department volunteers unloading a new custom apparatus from a railway boxcar at the Western Maryland railway siding in York. Total cost of the unit was $9,811.00 not including shipping costs of $295.20. It becomes the first new piece of motorized apparatus in the departments history. In 1992, of seven units of it’s type purchased by county departments, it remained one of only five still in service, and only one of two in its size and class. For more than 24 years, it would serve as a "First Out" unit and presently remains available for brush, water fill, and adverse condition type calls. At this writing there are only three such units which remaining in county service. The original purchasing committee consisted of those listed below.
Joseph A. Strobeck, Pres Charles Gladfelter, Chief
Ivan Bentzel Robert Clewell
James Eberly Roy Eberly
Lester Gentzler Horace Heiss
Harold Howett Charles Moyer
Gerald E. C. Smith Harvey Moyer
Ervin Kohler Thomas Smith
J.O. Snyder Richard T. Fix
Michael Yasenchar Carlton Kreidler, Sr.
On September 10, 1951, the department responded to a railroad tie fire on the Ben Stabley farm. It is the departments first fire call since delivery of the new FWD pumper, however, it is not used. A portable pump and creek water is utilized.
December 18, 1951, a fabricating shop on West Water Street, being occupied by Formit Steel Company is reported on fire. The 1924 vintage fire siren does not work and by the time men and equipment arrive, the building was totally destroyed. It is said that this structure was the original 1899 fire house but the information cannot be confirmed. In June of 1952, the original Citizens Fire and Hose Company bell is hung in a new steel structure, fabricated by Formit Steel and made operational atop the fire hall, as to forego any such future siren failures.
By March of 1952, a committee of three consisting of Thomas J. T. Ness, Richard T. Fix, and Charles Gladfelter is instructed to ascertain costs of radio transmitters and receivers. They would later be purchased through civil defense and be of compatible frequency with the Dallastown and Red Lion Departments.
August 1952 The department takes best appearing apparatus honors at the 1952 York County Convention held in Dallastown.
On November 17, 1952, a fire of major proportion next to the fire station is reported at 7:45pm, and units from Yoe, Dallastown and Red Lion respond to the Victor L. Winstead Tobacco Company. York City Fire Chief Ellis Wagner responded to the scene, along with the Rex Aerial Truck. Grantley Ambulance stood by. The York County Fire Chiefs Association meeting which had not yet formerly been called to order at the time of the blaze, was disbanded so their members could help the Yoe Department. A major portion of the building was gutted and more than 100 tons of tobacco destroyed as the fire burned out of control well into the night.
In December 1952, the department received delivery of a 1953 Chevrolet 3/4 ton panel unit to be utilized as a service truck. The cost was $1,884.00. By spring of 1953 all units are equipped with two way radios purchased through Civil Defense. Yoe Fire Co. became one of the first county departments to acquire a license for a 110 watt base station, call identification # KGC - 468.
About the same time one of the department's most innovative techniques was placed into service and also introduced to other York County departments by President Strobeck.
It was a system by which every property owner in the Yoe response area was assigned a number being so indicated by a small box and number located on a large 4' X 8' hand painted map at the fire station. The map indicated water supplies of ponds and streams, and all structures in the rural response areas in addition to the most adequate direction of response. Since most of the fire calls came via telephone to the S.L.Neff store, the owner need only give his name and/or number. The Station File System revealed the location on the map and other pertinent information. In essence, it was an early type box alarm system and the first of its kind in the county. These initial response methods would be discarded in late 1975 after initiation of York County Control. But, the basics of this system remain quite evident in the present enhanced, technology driven system.
In May of 1954, the department purchased a used 1947 Ford F800 Army tractor trailer which was to be transformed into a 2200 gallon tank truck. The "Water Wagon" as it was called was placed in service on July 8, 1954 and was the largest water conveyor maintained by any county fire department at that time. Total cost was $2,400.00. It was widely use by the Southern York County Fire Deptartents and was the leader of the "Mother Tanker" water supply concept. The tractor was shortened considerably to meet the station housing requirements of only 28'.By today’s standards most straight rigs are a minimum of 30'. The drivers said “it could turn on a dime and give 5 cents change".
In March of 1961, The 1926 American LaFrance was retired from service and replaced with a used 500 GPM American on an International Chassis purchased from Beltsville, MD through the Glenn D. Culbert Company. The 1926 LaFrance was purchased by H. Gemmil Auto parts for $200.00. Again, department members would be unsuccessful in their efforts to bring it home for restoration in 1971, and in 1972 it became covered by the Agnus Flood. It was eventually retrieved by a private party when the junk yard was cleared of all vehicles in 1991, and is currently being restored by
Between 1962 and 1968 the department’s primary objective was to raise enough funds for land and a new facility. Numerous building committees were selected during the period. In May of 1964 the Yoe Leaf Tobacco Factory was destroyed by fire, its owner and local resident Bruce R. Snyder, transferred the large lot bordered by Church Street, Pennsylvania Avenue, and East Water Street to Yoe Fire Co. for $1.00.
Due to continued safety concerns, the 1947 Ford tractor was replaced in 1966 with a new GMC 7600 series unit at a total cost of $5800.00. R.W. Bowman and Sons Incorporated was the supplier with York Transfer Company purchasing the old unit.
In late 1968, Dallastown Area School Board sold at auction, its properties at Main, George, and Church Streets in Yoe. The fire company and Salem United Methodist Church jointly purchased the 55 X 400 ft. former play ground for $1,000.00. In the same year the department purchased its first 15 tone alerted Regency monitors and engaged Springettsbury Fire Co. to be its dispatching station. Phone stickers were distributed throughout the first due response area.
In spring of 1969, ground breaking ceremonies were held at the West George Street property and construction started shortly thereafter. A local businessman and member R.C. Crull acted as general contractor and during the next few months major portions of the building project were completed or supported by the department volunteers.
On October 24, 1969 a crane removed the entire siren and bell framework from the Main Street building and volunteers set it in place at the new station.
On Sunday October 25, 1969 all motorized equipment was ceremoniously moved to it’s new and present location at 36 East George Street. The four bay 40 X 60 ft. facility cost just over $15,000.
In July of 1970 York County Control went on the air, and at the same time all county air raid sirens, presently in use, were dismantled. Yoe acquired the Civil Defense siren which was originally mounted on the WSBA-TV tower, and volunteers, Wayne Breighner, Robert Strobeck, George Looks and Terry Fix built a new siren bank in the Yoe Park. In 1988, due to deterioration and storm damage, the signal wire between the station and the park siren was abandoned. An electronic controller was mounted at the park and use of the station siren via County Control was discontinued. A local outside pull box, or the station fire detection system would be its only means of activation.
In the Spring of 1971 Borough Officials voted to sell the Borough Building on Main Street and use the monies to offset expenses of materials necessary for a 30 X 40 ft. extension to the West George Street fire company facility. The volunteers performed all necessary work at a cost of approximately $7200. The Borough in turn was granted a 15 year lease for the contribution. The expansion had a small kitchen, equipment bay, and a meeting area.
In June 6, 1971 the department placed a 1963 Metro walk-in van into service at a total cost of $695. Philip J. Rojahn, of Rojahn Kitchens, Dallastown donated the vehicle and Stetler Motors of Dallastown furnished the facilities to renovate it. All work was performed by department volunteers.
Toward yearend 1971 the tanker trailer began to deteriorate rapidly with leaks being repaired after every response. A new 3500 gallon unit financed by an active member was ordered from Fruehauf Corporation at a cost of $6700. It was placed in service on December 21, 1971.
The seventies brought more change and the department began to flourish with new activity and personnel as new approaches to Emergency Services were presented. Springettsbury Rescue personnel were utilized to enhance the departments’ vehicle rescue operations. Specialized equipment was purchased and members completed state certified instruction. At the same time Fire Chief James Eberly saw a great need for Emergency Medical Services in the area. The only available ambulances were supplied by the Burg and Eberly Funeral Homes, which often lacked personnel. Department members were polled on starting an ambulance service and in late September a meeting was held at the fire hall with all interested parties attending, including a few local businessmen. At a meeting on October 18, 1972 it was voted to proceed. Monies were necessary to start the organization and purchase its first ambulance. On station for presentation to the group for consideration was a 1965 Cadillac. It was purchased that same evening at a cost of $4200.00 with monies made available through personal commitments of those persons present. It was agreed, the organization would be a separate entity of the fire company with its own officers and financial backing.
In late October of 1972 it was chartered as the Yoe Fire Company Ambulance Club. Memberships were solicited from the area by the Yoe Fire Co. Ladies Auxiliary. Personnel was trained by certified instructor and Fire Lt. Wayne Breighner as five crews, four night and one day, began operations.
Following initial training, members enrolled in York and Memorial Hospital training courses with Debra Eberly becoming the organizations first EMT. At the same time a by-law change within the fire department accepting women as active members was adopted.
On November 6, 1972, the department completed upgrading of its service truck and changed its designation with York County Control to Rescue 36. The 1953 panel was loaded with 100 gallons of foam and placed on reserve status. At about the same time the department donated its old tank trailer to the newly built York County Fire School for use in its flammable liquids burn pit.
In the Spring of 1973, Yoe became the third rescue unit in the county to carry a hydraulic rescue tool known as the "jaws of life". The equipment, built by Hurst, was donated by the Ladies Auxiliary at a cost of $4700.00.
In Mid-year of 1974, a truck committee was selected to receive bids on a new engine and by late fall the unit would be ordered in late American LaFrance, in Elmira, New York.
On January 12, 1974 the department, with the help of the Ladies Auxiliary, liquidated its building debt. A note burning ceremony was held that evening in the fire hall with President Joseph R. Strobeck presiding. Later that year, York County would initiate the "911" system and all departments would receive new station numbers with Yoe becoming number 36. At about the same time the York County Fire Chiefs and Firefighters Association established guidelines and inspected units designated as Rescue. Rescue 36 became the third county unit to be inspected and certified, following Hanover and Springettsbury.
In mid 1975 a new Cadillac Ambulance was placed into service and in February of 1976, after nearly 1 1/2 years, the truck committee went to Elmira New York for a pre-delivery inspection of their new 1250 GPM engine on a C900 Ford chassis. Total cost less equipment was $47,502.00 with the Ladies Auxiliary presenting the department with a $3000.00 check. The 1953 International 500 GPM unit was sold to Laurel Fire Company, Windsor, for $3000.00.
In May of 1976, under direction of Chief Terry Fix the department personnel were encouraged to vigorously pursue extrication training through local and out of state courses and in early June of 1976, a group of four, three men and one woman, completed a course at Delaware State Fire School. Terry Fix would eventually recommend designating the school as our primary source of training. To date, the department continues to extensively utilize Delaware many phases of rescue operations training to include Confined Space Vehicle, Trench, Structural. Nearly 100% of our active volunteers have completed three or more courses as we promote the school for all required Initial Firefighter Training. Officer courses are regularly attended as we support continuing education at all levels of leadership.
In June of 1977, department personnel traveled to Hershey, PA to compete in the First Annual Eastern Rescue competition. Positioned against some well known departments, such as, Elsemere, Delaware and Bethesda, Chevy Chase, Md., Yoe unit was the only York County unit in attendance, finishing with a fifth place trophy against 17 departments from a five state area.
In August of 1977, the department suffered a devastating loss when along with other stolen items, 31 years of its records are reported missing.
In May of 1978, the department sells the Metro Rescue and the1953 Chevrolet Panel and purchases a 7500 series 1976 GMC with an Eastern Rescue body. It would become the first certified Rescue unit in York County to be equipped with a pump, water, 1 1/2 inch attack lines and a 40 gallon wrap around foam system. Total $30,000.00 debt was supported with acquisition of a $15,000.00 2% state loan. At the same time a used 1975 Dodge one ton 4-wheel drive pickup was purchased from Stetler Motors, Dallastown, at a cost of $2000.00. It would take department personnel a year to refurbish and transform the vehicle into a brush unit with pump and roll capabilities. On the 6th of March 1978, the Ambulance Club incorporated, and using Federal grant monies purchased a new modular type ambulance. It allowed the club to be one of the first to qualify for Volunteer Ambulance Service Certification (VASC).
In May 1978 Rescue personnel held regular water rescue classes at the Dallastown Area High School pool as they prepared for the Second Annual Rescue Competition in Hershey. Eventually they would find themselves competing in three evolutions of water, structural and vehicular rescue evolutions, ultimately returning with a first place trophy, $500.00 and 25 lb. of Hershey Kisses. It would be noted they were the only squad to achieve 100% in the water rescue evolution. The crew consisted of Jay Myers, Rick Searle, Robert Strobeck, James Olp, Lt. Wayne Breighner, Elmer Spears, and Chief Terry Fix.
In December 1978, Yoe, Dallastown, Felton, Windsor, and Yorkanna, for the first time in their departments’ history, received contracts to provide Fire protection for residents of Windsor Township and in February of 1979 all departments including Red Lion signed an unprecedented 5 year protection plan. They continue that unified effort to this day, recently formalizing themselves and being recognized through Township Resolution as the Windsor Township Fire and Emergency Rescue Services Association.
In May of 1979, Brush 36 was completed and placed in service with all work being performed by department personnel. The department also applied for a license to operate rescues and training on an alternate frequency of 33.10. It would eventually be obtained in April of 1982.
On June 10, 1979, the department attended the third and final rescue competition at Hershey. Yoe placed 5th and became the only York County Rescue Squad to have participated in the three year exercise. Members also enrolled and completed a 54 hour advanced firefighter class at Dallastown.
In August 1979, the Fire Company, Ambulance Club, Ladies Auxiliary and Borough Council all participated in defraying roof replacement expenses at a cost of $5980.00. The ambulance club placed a new EVF unit in service and later that year, in November, Tanker 36 was re-outfitted by Four Guys with a 500 GPM pump, new large diameter fill and discharge piping at a cost of $11,348.00.
Through the 80's many changes took place. In April of 1980 a fire, heat and smoke detection system was installed in the facility. In February of 1982, Ambulance Club and Fire Company personnel met to select a building committee for a joint expansion effort. By June of 1983 the department equipped itself with its first 1400 ft. of 4" LDH at a cost of $9435.00 and in 1984, the Ambulance Club purchased a new Yankee Coach. At the same time the building committee announced expansion plans were drawn and ready for review. In October the ladies auxiliary donated a deluge gun and accessories at a cost of $2100.00, and in March 1986, a model "O" Hurst Ring Cutter was purchased at a cost of $2148.00.
In 1987 as many ambulance clubs across the county experienced difficulty maintaining adequate staffing of volunteers, Yoe enlisted paid EMT's to staff itself daily 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. In October of the same year a contract was signed with Hahn Motor Company to supply the department with a 1500 GPM/1500 gallon capacity all aluminum pumper tanker. The unit would be delivered in May of 1988 with a cost of $182,563.00.
In July 1988, a ground breaking ceremony was finally held and the building expansion project became a reality. As the building progressed, volunteers donated thousands of man hours in labor to complete the project. Major portions of the building, including electrical, painting, all floor coverings, ceilings, and outside grounds were completed by volunteers. The Ambulance Club also purchase a new Blue Star modular unit at a cost of $58,262. The club retained it's Yankee Coach now having two rigs in service. By years end 1989, the department had also computerized its operations and designed it's own fire, ambulance and station activity tracking software.
In July 1989 and open house and equipment housing was held with Scott Stein of York Hospital and A. Carvell Foster being keynote speakers. The new 88' units were officially housed being ceremoniously pushed into the engine room by the members present.
In November of 1990, the fire department placed an order for a Saulsbury Rescue Pumper on a Spartan Chassis. Total cost of the unit less equipment was $298,544.00. The ladies auxiliary donated $4000.00 to the department with the monies being earmarked by the officers, for an airbag system. The unit was equipped with five inch LDH arriving in March of 1992. At the same time the Ambulance Club proceeded to refurbish its 1984 Yankee Coach on a 1992 350XLT Ford Chassis at a cost of $53,209.00.
On April 14, 1992, after more than 4 years of planning and development, the department, along with four other departments, Red Lion, Dallastown, Jacobus and York Township united their efforts to formalize the York Township Fire Emergency Rescue Services Association. It was to be the first of its kind uniquely designed to address a combined effort, at the local level, specific to our response areas and the people which we serve. The departments and their officers committed themselves to initiate and maintain a proper level of preplanning, to promote and coordinate for public and departmental good all activities and services rendered to the township, to discourage unnecessary duplication and indiscriminate equipment purchases, to assure a proper level of upgrading, maintenance, and reimbursement for equipment, and to promote the science of modern firefighting tactics. Just six years later, in May 1998 it would be prematurely abandoned, and in it’s place the Department of Fire and Rescue, York Township was initiated under the direction of the five volunteer Chiefs and a newly created paid Township Fire Chief. However, this would prove to be an unproductive effort with the new Chief resigning in March of 1999.
At the 1992 York County Convention, ten of the original men who formed the foundation of the department through the early 40's to late 50's proudly manned the 1951 FWD on parade day.
Throughout 1992 and 1993 the company created and developed Administrative and Operational Procedures to provide guidance and policy for the department and it’s personnel. In January of 1993 QRS Certification was received for Rescue 36 and $12,000 was appropriated to up grade the station radio system and install an encoder. Shortly thereafter the company set out to enhance the Fire Police by providing them with additional equipment and training.
One of the most labor and cost intensive undertakings for the department in it’s 100 year history began at a Special Meeting on November 9, 1995, called by President Terry Fix, at which a proposal for facility joint ownership was presented by Fire Company and Ambulance Club officers. A draft submission of a Resolution and Property Maintenance Agreement prepared by Atty. D. Michael Craley was presented, granting the Yoe Fire Company Ambulance Club joint ownership of the facility at 36 East George Street and creating a Facility Management Group of senior department administrators as overseers. At the November 13 regular fire company meeting it was voted for both organizations to equally make a final payment of $86,000 on the existing mortgage. The Ambulance Club would eventually hold ownership to 40% of the building and the Fire Company 60%. With 21 members present on December 11, 1995, the membership voted unanimously to proceed with signing a formalized resolution. Nearly a year later on November 11, 1996, architectural drawings were completed and the project got under way. James Henry was the General Contractor.
At completion of the project, on Sunday August 30, 1998, a dedication ceremony was held with neighboring dignitaries and guests. State Representative Mike Waugh, who was soon to become State Senator, delivered the address. The original Citizens Fire and Hose Company bell had been in storage for more than 10 years since the last renovation. The ceremony was concluded with a dedication of the Bell Memorial on the west end of the building. As the names of each member who had passed on during that 10 year period were reverently read, the bell was rung.
We take great pride in our modernized facility and apparatus, and are quite thankful for the full support of the communities and municipal governments around us. Without the devoted efforts and participation of our volunteer firefighters, emergency medical personnel, ladies auxiliary, and their families, we could not be an effective organization. We continue to grow, mature, and strive to provide supportive leadership within the Emergency Service Organizations of York County.
At present we find ourselves very busy serving our borough and two townships. In 1998 we responded to 1494 medical calls and 340 fire related incidents. Our personnel are actively involved participants on the York County Special Rescue Task Force, utilizing their skills in High Angle, Rope, Confined Space, Trench and Structural Rescue work. We wish to take this opportunity to express a heart felt thank you to all persons who have directly or indirectly made our committed service to our community as well as the surrounding areas possible.
The present officers and members of Yoe Fire Company wish to dedicate this history of our first 100 years in memory of those 72 Charter Members who had the foresight to recognize the importance of founding the Citizens Fire and Hose Company of Yoe, and all the past deceased or living members and their families who gave of their time, effort, and abilities, to make this fire company a viable resource to Yoe, the surrounding community, and York County.
With the 21st century being just around the corner, we can expect to see continued change within our Emergency Services environment as engineering design and technology driven systems take on a new dimension. As governmental mandates and increased density of our response areas have made additional personal demands on all of us, we as public servants need to assure our organizations do not loose sight of their intended purpose and commitment to friends, neighbors, businesses, and strangers alike.