History

February 13th, 1938 a residents group was formed to improve quality of life issues in the eastern LaSalle section of Niagara Falls, and the south western portion of Wheatfield. Mr. Charles Farron was elected Chairmen and the group chose the name Frontier Community Club.  This group meet at the church on 99th Street, and the residents wanted improvements in roads, drainage, sewers, lighting sidewalks and mail delivery.

This group met and participated in community activities and pressured leaders for improvements and change.

One issue that became apparent was due to the lack of good roads access to this area by anything other than a car was almost impossible, and due to that lending agencies were very hesitant to loan money due to the lack of fire protection.

 

A group of people from this association, meet with the powers to be of the Town of Wheatfield. Their goal was to use this area to form a sportsmen’s club. The town kindly refused the request of these people but in turn suggested the formation of a volunteer fire company.

On March 23, 1939 in the home of George Whitmore of 449 102nd Street the first meeting was held to organize the new proposed volunteer fire company, with help of the Niagara County Volunteer Firemen’s Association.

On April 18, 1939 Clyde Ready reported at the Frontier Community Club meeting under a report of the formation of the volunteer fire company that paperwork naming the new fire company “Frontier Volunteer Fire Company” was submitted to the supreme court of the State of New York. And upon its approval and approval of the Board from the Town of Wheatfield, the paperwork will be forwarded to the Secretary of State for the incorporation there fore.

On October 16, 1939 in the River Road School house the first official organizational meeting of the fire company was held. The group needed 30 members to sign up prior to the issuance of the incorporation papers.  George Geotzman was elected as president, Clyde Ready as Vice President Warren Riley was the first Fire Chief and Harvey Geotzman Assistant Chief.

The fire company sold bonds as a way to raise capital for the building of a fire house and purchase of equipment. Out of all the bonds sold only 2 were cashed in and that was to settle an estate.

In the meantime as this was going on George Geotzman Sr. and Harvey Mack Sr. donated building lots 2 each that they owned on Frontier Ave between 102nd and 103rd streets for the organization to build a building. The original 1 bay block building was completed in 1941.

On February 26, 1940 the fire company purchased its first truck from the North Tonawanda Fire company for 50.00 with a 5 dollar down payment. It was a used Brockway. The rig was stored at a gas station on Buffalo Ave. owned by Clarence Berhens.

On April 24, 1940 the now Frontier Volunteer Fire Co. was officially incorporated by the State of New York.

In 1941 the Ladies Auxiliary of the fire company was formed and Leona Cramer was elected as its president.

In 1942 a second used truck was purchased from the Eden Volunteer Fire Company.

The fire company held fund raiser dinners, field days at Neptune Beach than on River Road, than behind the fire company headquarters, began a youth group for the areas youth (Today known as our JR Firefighter Program) hosted a Boy Scout troop.

In 1949 the  first new piece of apparatus was purchased a 500 gpm American marsh pumper truck on a dodge chassis, many people know this truck as the mud turtle truck

In 1952, the fire company building was remodeled, with a club room and 2nd bay added, and a dining hall. This is the white building in some of the pictures.

In 1954 the Frontier Band was organized.

In 1959 the fire company purchased a dodge power wagon john bean high pressure fog unit. Commonly referred to as the grass truck.

In 1961 just in time for the field day that year a New Pumper high pressure unit was purchased and received. That unit was a 750 gpm unit built by John Bean on a ford chassis.

The Fire Company and Auxiliary kept working and raising funds, soon bingo games were added to the mix. Every week the crews of members would load up the supplies needed and transport them to the Wa Ha Ki restaurant at the Wheatfield North Tonawanda line for the weekly games than haul it all back the fire hall to store. This lead to a lot of extra work. So in 1969, the fire company took out a mortgage to build a banquet hall on the property. It included a bar and kitchen for the auxiliary.

In 1972 a replacement for the 1949 dodge American was ordered and delivered to the fire company, A young fire engine on a ford chassis similar to the 1961 John Beam, with one problem, it was too large to fit into the Station, so a bay door was lifted for enough clearance. Temporarily.

In 1973 additional funds were added to the mortgage and the 2 story white block building was demolished and a truck bay built onto the banquet hall. This building still stands at 1999 Frontier Ave and is currently used by Mark Cerrone Construction.

In the early 70’s ambulance transport was done by Niagara Fire Co #1, with all the calls they took they replaced their Cadillac style ambulance with a larger van and donated to Frontier for a trial basis the Cadillac ambulance.

In 1974 a rescue truck was purchased to carry additional equipment and manpower and to back up the ambulance. This truck was taken out one evening before training to test the 4 wheel drive, it became buried in a swamp off of 102nd St. all pieces of apparatus except the 1972 young engine were brought down to help pull it out. Many became stuck also. It was the 1949 dodge engine that finally pulled all the rigs out. The chief of the St Johnsburg Fire Company at the time nicknamed the Frontier Chief Mud Turtle, and the name Mud Turtles stuck to this day.

In 1977 a new ambulance was purchased to replace the Cadillac ambulance.

Also in 1977 the environmental disaster Love Canal hit. Basically eliminating all of the surrounding buildings to the Fire Company and bringing drastic and dynamic changes to the organization.

In 1980 the fire company purchased the former River Road School and property from the Town of Wheatfield. With thoughts of using the property to bring back the field days.

In 1984 due to the Love Canal Disaster a Fire Station to house some apparatus was built on the River Road Property.

In 1985 The 1959 Dodge John Bean brush truck was replaced with a 1961 unit similar to the 59. The 59 was sold to a volunteer fire company out of state.

In 1988 a used 1972 telesquirt engine built by Young fire equipment similar to the 1972 we currently owned was purchased to replace the 1961 John Bean engine. Which was moved to reserve than sold to a farmer.

In 1989 after lengthy and heated discussions it was approved to purchase property on Liberty Dr for the possibility of moving the fire company headquarters.

In 1990 a new ambulance was purchased to replace the 1977 unit. The 1977 unit was used as a second ambulance for a period of time than sold to a building contractor.

In 1991 Construction of a new building including club bar, banquet facilities and truck bays were built on the property on Liberty Dr.

In 1995 A pair of New 1250 gpm engines were purchased from the R. D. Murray to replace the 2 1972 units.

In 2001 the 1974 Rescue Unit was retired and sold to a member.

On August 13, 2001 the fire company experienced the line of duty death of Firefighter Ronald T. Kreamer at an apartment building fire on Sawyer Dr.

In 2003 a mortgage burning ceremony was held for the Liberty Drive property, in addition, the note was paid off on the two 1995 Engines.

In 2004 a new ambulance was purchased to replace the 1990 unit, which was sold off.

In 2007 the fire company discontinued ambulance service. The 2003 unit was sold to the Jamison Road Fire Company. Also the fire Company Purchased Two used chief’s cars from the Getzville Fire Company. One unit was used to run EMS Calls, the other issued to the fire chief.

In 2010 the fire company purchased a new 1500 gpm engine from the Rosenbauer Corporation.  To replace one of the 1995 R. D. Murray Engines. That unit, Engine 4 was used as a reserve until it was sold to the Beaver Falls Volunteer Fire Company in Texas.

In 2011 the 1961 Dodge Brush truck was removed from service and sold to a private individual.

In 2013 the Fire Company took Delivery of a new Light Rescue truck to move manpower and run ems calls, the chief’s truck that was being used for this purpose was assigned to the Asst. Chief.

That brings us to today, with 75 years of dedicated service to the community. Thank you to the men and women who gave of their time and talents so we could reach this point today.

There have been 31 Presidents and 21 Fire Chiefs to lead the organization, the auxiliary has had 17 Presidents

The fire company has brought out the leadership quality in a lot of members, Frontier has been the home of 5 Past Presidents of the Niagara County Fire Chiefs Assn.  7 Past Presidents of the Niagara County Volunteer Firemen’s Assc. 2 Past Presidents of the Niagara County Fire Police Assc. 1 Current Vice President of The Western New York Volunteer Firemen’s Assc. 3 secretaries to that assc, and 1 Director to the Firemen’s Assc of the State of New York.

Line Officer

Chief - Bruce Mack

Asst. Chief - Joseph Eddy

Captain - Mark Wright

Lieutenant - Alan Parry

Lieutenant - Nick Shepherd

Executive Board

President - Robert Duchesne

Vice President - Daniel Jones

Recording Secretary - Patricia Stafford

Treasure - Brian Perry

Financial Secretary - Gary Hunt

Sergeant At Arms - Chris McKimmie

Trustee - Bobby Masters Jr.

Trustee - Christopher Richter

Trustee - Charles Stafford