I called and talked to Fire Chief Don Patnoude and he gave me the following information:
“We are happy to announce that 68 years after it was new, the original Wayne Township Pumper #1 has returned home. The pumper was purchased in 1941 and was the original engine to respond out of Waynedale (what is now Southwest Station #1). The ‘41 still has some of the Wayne Township markings on it. According to records the American LaFrance was replaced in 1967. From there we’re not sure of all the travels and fire runs this truck has made but we do know it made it to Arkansas. It was purchased by Jerald Burns from Palestine, AR. Jerald collects antique fire equipment and contacted us when he added the ‘41 to his collection. Jerald was kind enough to deliver the truck to us and we certainly appreciate all his help to bring the truck back home. When finished, the ‘41 will return to its original bay located at the rear of Station #1 in Waynedale.”
I received an email from Jerald Burns, who was the previous owner and lives in Arkansas.
Dear Waynedale News:
“On September 20, 2006, I got the fire truck registered and added an Arkansas antique license plate (LPN 88926). You should have seen the young county tax assessor’s face earlier in the day when she told me that K7-2898 was not the serial number for the truck because there were not enough numbers. (VIN numbers now have 17 digits & this is what she demanded). When I saw that I wasn’t getting anywhere. I showed her the bill-of sale. No problems this time. Serial numbers were not very long in 1941…….Jerald Burns”
As a child you may remember riding on the old pumper during Fire Safety Week. After it is restored, maybe it can again give kids a ride around Waynedale. Even the big kids would love to go for a ride.
On Saturday, May 16th, the Southwest Firefighters Association will be hosting a
“All-U-Can-Eat” Hog Roast to raise funds to restore our 1941 American LaFrance pumper. Come out and enjoy the fun, food and festivities. Meal served will include roasted hog, BBQ or sauerkraut, baked beans, potato salad, drink and desert. The ‘41 LaFrance will be on-site for viewing. Cost is $8 for adult and carryouts. Kids 10 & under free. For more information please email: email@example.com.
Note of Interest:
Anyone wishing to donate their skills, their products or their money to restoring the American LaFrance K-7 should contact Caleb at 241-8839 or Jason at 466-4823.