Hicksville Fire Department
We have 31 Firefighters, of which 8 are certified to Firefighter Level I. Basic training to be a Firefighter includes 36 hours of training with 18 hours per year of Continuing Education.
At this time our fleet includes a 2003 Elite Power Primary Pumper, a 1991 Pierce Secondary Pumper, a 2200 gal. International Tanker, a 1997 Ford Multi-Purpose small Pumper and Utility Vehicle, a 1982 step-van equipment truck, and a 1988 4WD grass unit with a 300 gal. Skid mounted tank. Some equipment furnished by the Defiance County Emergency Management Department are a small Mobile Generator, a Large mobile generator and a HazMat Trailer.
Present Officers of the Hicksville Volunteer Fire & Rescue are:
- Fire Chief, Scott Cramer
- Deputy Chief of Fireground Operations, Bruce Hart
- Assistant Fire Chief, Stacy Lemper
- Assistant Fire Chief, Travis Phillips
- Captain, Dusty Evans
- Captain, Brent Neidhardt
- Lieutenant, Bruce Silcott
- Lieutenant, Mike Tomecek
The first organization of the Hicksville Fire Department dates to 1872. The department was originally known as the Union Hose Company and consisted of two divisions, Hose Company #1 and #2.
On May 19, 1890, a resolution was adopted by the Hicksville Municipal Council to construct a waterworks system. This was completed and in use before the winter of that year. An efficient fire department was formally organized in Hicksville with Frank Snyder as Chief.
On March 24, 1892, Section #3 was formed and added to the Union Hose Company. It was designated as the Hook-and-Ladder Company of the department. The organization was then called the Union Hose, Hook and Ladder Company.
In 1925, the fire department attempted modernization by replacing the horse-drawn equipment with the internal combustion engine. Two Reo fire trucks were purchased, one of these being a chemical and ladder combination, the other a hose truck, providing the Hicksville public with first class fire protection.
The department through the years has added much to aid the community of Hicksville. In 1960, the department purchased their first rescue vehicle, a panel truck.
In 1974, thorough a Federal Grant, a 1974 Dodge Van rescue vehicle was purchased and partially equipped, from Braun Industries. At this time the Hicksville Fire Department started offering EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) Service. Bill Elwood was the first certified EMT, moving to Hicksville from the Highland Twp. Fire Department, and the Fire Department followed by training their firefighters as EMT’s.
In 1974, several firefighters took SCUBA training (Self Contained Underwater Breathing Apparatus) and formed the Underwater Search and Recovery Unit, a division of the Hicksville Fire Department. This unit operated a specially equipped motor home for search and recovery operation until its disbandment in early 1992.
In 1981, the Hicksville Rescue Squad was separated from the Fire Department, reporting to the Fire Chief. Bill Elwood was chosen as the first Squad Chief serving for six years. The group operated in this manner till moving from the Fire Department in 1997. In 2005, the Rescue Squad was technically returned to the Fire Department. It had never officially been removed from being a part of the Fire Department, and in 2008 the Rescue Squad moved back into the Village building at 111 South Main St.
A few large fire losses in the past include: Miller Manufacturing, January 1940; Methodist Church fire, January 28, 1940; Presbyterian Church fire, December 10, 1961; National Ideal Manufacturing Company fire, March 22, 1969; Haver Furniture store fire, April 16, 1976; Defiance Landmark, Inc. fire, September 26, 1992.
Two fire deaths were recorded in Hicksville prior to 1990. On New Year’s Day, 1990, Hicksville Fire Department experienced the first of seven fire deaths over the next sixteen months.
In September 2005, the Fire Chief became concerned about cracks in the basement floor and water leaking into the basement. This was brought to the Village Administrators attention, who contacted a group of structural Engineers to check on the situation. After studying the situation, their reply was that they could not guarantee that the floor over the basement was not in eminent danger of collapse. On November 11th, 2007, we moved into the new Fire Station at 115-117 South Main St.
In 1990, Hicksville Fire Department hosted the 116th Annual Northwest Ohio Volunteer Fireman’s Association Convention, in conjunction with the departments centennial. This was the first time since 1933 that the Convention was held in Hicksville. Fire Departments from all over northwest Ohio participated in the event which was one of the largest of its kind in the state. Members of the Hicksville (New York) Fire Department from our sister city on Long Island, New York, served as Grand Marshall for the parade.
Past Hicksville Fire Department Chiefs are as follows:
- Frank Snyder – December 29, 1890 to April 1891
- Washington Thompson – April 13, 1891 to March 1892
- Frank Snyder – March 1892 to November 1894
- H. H. Miller – November 1894 to April 1895
- Carl Diffenbaugh – April 1895 to April 1896
- Frank Snyder – April 1896 to April 1903
- E. E. Crary – April 1903 to April 1906
- Ed Sinn – April 1906 to April 1911
- H. H. Miller – April 1911 to November 1912
- William Bair – November 1912 to April 1913
- Adrian Miller – April 1913 to July 1913
- A. J. Blaylock – July 1913 to April 1914
- J. O. Longsworth – April 1914 to January 1918
- Delta Driver – January 1918 to February 1940
- Alf Wonderly – February 1940 to January 1947
- Clair Cahill – January 1947 to January 1954
- Allen Poper – January 1954 to January 1965
- Tellis Carey – January 1965 to January 1966
- Allen Poper – January 1966 to January 1967
- Earl Beverly – January 1967 to January 1968
- Bob Stotler – January 1968 to January 1972
- Jack Gloor – January 1972 to January 1978
- Louie Rex – January 1978 to January 1981
- Virgil (Pete) Pearson – January 1981 to June 1983
- Louie Rex – June 1983 to January 1984
- Joe Stotler – January 1984 to February 2005
- Bill Elwood – February 2005 to January 2009
- Doug Miller - January 2009 to April 2012
- Scott Cramer - May 2012 to current
On August 6, 1990, The Hicksville Volunteer Firemen’s Association, Incorporated, was formed as a non-profit social organization and a support group for the Hicksville Fire Department. Some programs of the Firemen’s Association are the Fund Raising projects, Christmas For Kids and the Halloween Carnival. The Association also has Smoke Detectors available for citizens of the Community.
Charter members of this organization are as follows:
- Mark Bassett, not active
- Claron Bauer, deceased
- Earl Beverly, deceased
- Larry Brown, not active
- Mike Brown, retired
- Harold (Buck) Bungard, deceased
- Ken Bunn
- Ron Carwile, not active
- Scott Carwile, not active
- Gary Clifton, not active
- Scott Cramer
- Bill Elwood, retired
- Dick Evans, retired
- Dale Gallup, retired
- Denny Gipple, retired
- Jack Gloor, retired
- Frank Handy, not active
- Bob Hart, retired
- Bruce Hart
- Mark Haver (Attorney)
- Stacy Heitzmann, retired
- Jerry Hissong, retired
- Rev. Robert Knapp (Chaplain)
- Sheldon Levy, Jr., not active
- Elmer Marihugh, retired
- Dave Moore, not active
- Virgil (Pete) Pearson, deceased
- Louie Rex, deceased
- George Seibert, deceased
- Bob Sitton, retired
- Robert L. (Bob) Stotler, Sr., retired
- Robert L. (Joe) Stotler, Jr., retired
- Norm Terrill, retired
- Jim Wonderly, deceased
- Mark Yoder, not active
- Ray Yoder, retired
- Keith Yontz, retired