By Christy Porter, Managing Editor
The Licking City/Rural Fire Department hosted an Open House on Saturday, with the public invited to learn more about what the fire department does, how and why they do the things they do, and to experience first hand the equipment, vehicles and challenges.
Participants of all ages learned much from the volunteers of all ages, and had fun while doing so.
Jackie Duncan and Jennifer Trout greeted those coming in, assisted with payment of rural fire dues, accepted applications for new fire department volunteers, accepted sealed bids for equipment to be sold, and sold raffle tickets for the Hatfield 12 gauge shotgun prior to the drawing held at 2 p.m. Robert Cardwell was the winner of that drawing. Information for the side-by-side ride fundraiser to be held in tandem with the Licking Senior Center on October 28 was also available. Check out their Facebook page at Licking Rural Fire Department to stay informed of their activities.
Terra Culley with Texas County 911 was available to answer questions and had free giveaways, including blue 911 lollipops, which the kids sported later on blue lips.
Fire prevention handouts and giveaways for the kids, from the kids, came in an easy to carry bag.
Texas County Memorial Hospital Ambulance EMT Bonnie Hill and Paramedic Brad Crawford gave informational tours of the ambulance and answered questions.
Sgt. Brian Allgire with the Licking Police Department visited with attendees and surprised everyone on occasion with flashing lights.
Firefighters were on hand to assist with the activities and to answer questions. Tours and demonstrations with all age participation were given throughout the firehouse. They included the rescue drag with one or two rescuers; wrestling a fire hose (not really at the restricted pressure); going through a confined space; climbing into and safely exiting the fire trucks and trying the firefighter equipment on for size.
Mayor Keith Cantrell and Aldermen Danny Wade and Linda Breedlove stopped by to show their support and participated in the activities.
Now knowing that firefighting is a very physical and demanding activity, participants enjoyed grilled hot dogs, chips and drinks to rebuild their strength.
A friendly reminder that volunteering with our local fire department is not just fighting fires, there are many ways in which you can assist, such as community events, record keeping and custodial assistance. For more information regarding the Licking City/Rural Fire Department, please call the non-emergency number at 573-889-8167.
Photos by Christy Porter