The forerunner to the current Eastern Randolph County Fire Protection District was created in 1982. Recently the current fire district celebrated 40 years of service to the community.
Before 1982, response to emergency calls for fires were handled by inmates from the local Missouri Department of Corrections housed at the Moberly Correctional Center. It was in 1982 when residents led the effort to create the Eastern Randolph Rural Fire Department. The non-profit association was formed on March 15th, 1982.
The non-profit association was funded through membership dues by residents in the service area. Fundraisers were held to raise the funds needed to construct the 3-bay fire station that is still in service today.
Two shifts of volunteers worked each day until the facility was completed.
Volunteers that served as firefighters learned the craft wherever they could. They didn’t have the most modern equipment for the day, but they worked to provide needed services. Over the years, the equipment was upgraded along with the training and skills of those that volunteer.
After asking the voters to go to the ballot box to form a tax-supported fire protection district, on September 25, 2015, the Eastern Randolph County Fire Protection District was formed. Today, the agency serves a portion of eastern Randolph County with an all-volunteer crew of 14 and a 5-member board of directors.
On the day, seven years after the district was formed, members of the community and some of those original volunteers came together to celebrate 40 years of service. The current crop of firefighters hosted an open house welcoming back those that were at the beginning.
“We are very grateful for the work those volunteers and community members did four decades ago”, said Fire Chief David Gaines. “They gave us a solid base to continue providing service to our neighbors when they need it most.”