History

The Woolwine Volunteer Fire Department, Inc., located at 9912 Woolwine Highway, Woolwine, Virginia (State Route 8), was officially organized in the spring of 1973.  The fire department was organized after the W. B. Clark home in Woolwine (which was located where the department is located today) was destroyed by fire.  The two-story house was totally engulfed in flames before the nearest fire brigade could make the 14 curvy, mountainous miles to the fire.  There was no chance to save anything.  The tragic loss of this landmark motivated the Woolwine Ruritan Club to petition for a fire department in the Smith River district of Patrick County, Virginia.  A site for the fire department was immediately available because the Woolwine High School had vacated several buildings due to consolidation.  In a mutual agreement, the school board granted the newly organized fire department a lease for a fire station in the vacated buildings.  The fire department remodeled the Agriculture building with 3 bays and a meeting room.  Using these facilities enabled the fire department to use its start up money for new equipment.

The fire department was chartered on April 20, 1973 with 50 members.  Six charter members are still very active and in 1998 were presented with life membership.  These are Warren Fain, Mavin Harris, Blanco Midkiff, Bernard Moran, Lee Pilson and Bennett Shuff.  Stanley Moran was presented with life membership in 2000.  Currently led by President Warren Fain, and Chief Bennett Shuff, the department now has 33 members.  To date, the department has responded to over 1000 alarms.  The department has an operating budget of $104,000.00 for 2012, which comes from County donations, Community donations, the United Way, and department fund raisers.  The department has musical events and an October/apple butter festival to raise these funds.  The department also has a very active ladies auxiliary, which helps raise these funds.  In 1998 the department purchased the Clark property across the road from the fire station and constructed a new fire station in 2005.

The fire department purchased a new 1973 Ford F750, 750 gallon per minute, 500-gallon capacity pumper and a new 1973 Chevy 1000-gallon tanker.  Crozet, Virginia loaned an old Crozet pumper to the department while the new trucks were being outfitted by the Oren Corp. in Roanoke, Virginia.  Major Ed Turner, County Administrator obtained a 1952 Reo 500 gallon 2.5 ton 6 x 6 brush truck for the fire department.  This truck was replaced in 1987 with a new 1987 Ford 1 ton 4 x 4 brush truck/quick reponse truck.  Major Turner also obtained a 1967 Kaiser Jeep 4 x 4 truck, which the department converted to a brush truck. In 2011 the Kaiser Jeep was replaced with a 1996 Ford F350 4 x 4 brush truck. In 1997, the department purchased a 1997 Freightliner 1000 gpm, 2500-gallon tanker/pumper. In 2008 a Mack Rescue Engine Truck was donated to the department by the Cranston Heights, Delaware Fire Department. In 2009 the Ford Pumper was replaced with a Pierce Lance Engine Truck.  In 2012 the department purchased a 1986 International Medium Rescue Truck.

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