19 West Valley View, Avondale, Arizona, Friday, August 3, 2012
Firefighters keep traditions alive
by Rachel Trott staff writer
Firefighting is a unique profession: Few other jobs produce the type of heroism that comes along with saving lives from a burning building. It’s no surprise then that firefighting is also unique in its traditions and history.
Red engines, Dalmatians The first all-volunteer fire department was created in 1736 in Philadelphia by Benjamin Franklin. Volunteer fire departments continued to be established throughout the East Coast, with many fire departments and their stations still existing today. More than 200 years later, Buckeye Fire Department recently opened its newest fire station in the Verrado community. The two-story, all red-brick station is purposely reminiscent of traditional fire stations from cities such as New York, Capt. Tommy Taylor said. “The fire chief we have now, Chief Bob Costello, he wants old-time tradition,” he said.
fire engines and ladder trucks with block gold letters on the sides.
The old-time tradition includes cherry-red
While other departments around the country have recently experimented with using white or yellow fire engines, the color red has been used by fire departments since horse-drawn wagons were used, Taylor explained.
Liliana Hernandez Hansel
of Tolleson died July 30, 2012, in Tolleson from colon cancer. Mrs. Hansel
Liliana “Lily” Hernandez Hansel, 53, View photo by Ray Thomas
DAN MALANOWSKI OF PHOENIX slides down the thing that makes a fire station a fire station — the fire pole — at Buckeye Fire Station No. 703 in Verrado.
“The redder they were, the shinier they were with the brass. It showed that the company cared for their equipment and they poured what money they had into it. They took a sense of pride in it,” he said. “A lot of departments who don’t have red trucks have lower morale, it all goes back to that sense of pride.”
One iconic piece of firefighter lore that’s missing from Buckeye’s red fire engines are Dalmatians.
by fire departments to help control horses pulling the fire-wagons and act as alert dogs. After engines replaced hooves, keeping Dalmatians became a tradition for fire departments until fairly recently in history. “A lot of departments have gotten sued because their dogs have gotten into fights with neighborhoods, so we don’t keep them anymore,” he explained. “I wish we could go back to that but unfortunately, lawsuits and times change.”
Commitment to community One traditional aspect of firefighting that hasn’t changed is a commitment to community, both within the department and with residents. Buckeye firefighters work in 48-hour
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shifts. When they’re not out on calls, they live and sleep in the same fire stations together. They also sit down to eat together, something that is important to getting to know each other and building a strong sense of family-like community, Taylor said. “That’s a rule, even if you bring your own food, we all sit and eat together at the table. This is the only place you’ll see that,” he said.
was born Dec. 28, 1958, in San Antonio to Jose Luis and Maria Hernandez. She is survived by four children, Valerie Renteria Skaggs, Jacqueline Renteria Simpson, Jose Renteria and Natalie Renteria; five grandchildren; three brothers, Joe, Jorge, Gabriel; and four sisters, Diana Quezada, Maria Herriage, Margie Wilson and Alma. Services will be held from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. today at Vineyard Church, 255 N. Litchfield Road in Goodyear. Funeral arrangements were made by Avenidas Funeral Chapel in Avondale.
Liliana Hansel A word about obituaries
The West Valley View publishes free obitu- aries for people who were residents or former residents of the West Valley. We also encourage the use of photos with obituaries. Photos will be cropped to a head shot, so they must be of fairly high resolution (at least 200 dpi) if submitted electronically. Free obituaries are edited to conform to
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Getting to know the individual fire fighters in his company helps Taylor better lead the group, he said. “You have to be in a certain sync,” he said. “It’s like being a coach, I need to know where our strengths and weaknesses are.” Dedication to the community they help protect is also a key tradition in firefighting. With 85 percent of Buckeye Fire Department’s calls being medically or service related, calls aren’t limited to just fighting fires. Oftentimes, Taylor will make sure people stay safe by checking and replacing batteries in smoke alarms for people after otherwise routine medical calls, he said. “I try to approach it with serving the community in mind,” he said. “It’s paying it back.”
No call for Buckeye’s Fire Department is too small, either. While Taylor hasn’t contributed to the stereotype of firefighters rescuing a cat from a tree, he has rescued a cat from a cactus, he said.
Obituaries may be submitted using our online form at westvalleyview.com
; click on Submit an Obituary. You may also e-mail, fax or mail us obituaries. Our e-mail is news1@ westvalleyview.com
. Our fax number is 623- 935-2103. Our mailing address is West Valley View, Inc., 1050 E. Riley Dr., Avondale, AZ 85323.
David Lopez David Lopez, 65, of Goodyear died July 29, 2012. He was born Dec. 23, 1946, in Tempe to Jesus and Alejandra and lived in Arizona all of his life. He was a forklift operator. He served in
the Army and was a Vietnam War veteran. He was a member of the Bobby Lopez Diaz VFW Post 6310 in Tolleson. Mr. Lopez is survived by his wife, Gloria; one son, David Jr.; four daughters, Jackie Monroe, Lydia, Cathy, and Joann; five sisters, Carmen, Connie, Belen, Malena, and Christine; two brothers, Joe and Jesus; 13 grandchildren, and nine great-grandchildren. Services will be Saturday at Avenidas Funeral Chapel, 522 E. Western Ave. in Old Town Avondale. Visitation will be at 10 a.m., with a Scripture Service at 11a.m. Burial will follow immediately at Resthaven Park Cemetery 6450 W. Northern Ave. Glendale. Deacon Jim Cascio will officiate.
Secundino Perez Secundino Perez, 66, of Goodyear died July 28, 2012, in Goodyear. Mr. Perez was born Jan. 29, 1946, in Potterville, Calif., to Secundino and Consuelo. He is survived by six brothers, Emeterio, Henry, Tito, Ralph, Ricky and Manuel; and six sisters, Helen, Trinie, Lucy, Rachel, Mary and Frances. Services have been held. Advantage Crystal Rose Funeral Home of Tolleson made the arrangements.
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