NOTE :DUE TO A SYSTEM ERROR THIS STORY WAS NOT POSTED EARLIER
On Saturday, February 26, the Conroe Fire Department celebrated their 100th birthday with the opening of it’s newest, state of the art station 4. The station located at 14901 Walter Woodson just past the Valero on FM 1488 at Interstate 45 was built on land acquired by Rigby Owen.
The land was donated of Lucinda W. Owen’s father, F. Walter Woodson.
The station built at a cost of $2.6 million is 8900 square feet. It replaces the station at Harpers Landing which The Woodlands and Conroe worked a deal.
The only drawback with the location is as the trucks responding to calls pull out of the station onto FM1488. This day as they responded with lights and sirens they were ignored by drivers who failed to allow them out of the driveway.
Motorists need to be aware of this station when they drive in that area and yield as the trucks exit.
The state of the art station is equipped with generator and automatic gas cut-offs to the stove when the alarm sounds. This to prevent a stove not tuned off and a fire station fire.
Among the members were former Chief Ed Grabein’s son Charles. Ed was chief from 1928-1950. He told stories about him when hew was twelve years old and already helping the fire department out.
The old station in downtown Conroe. When a ladder truck arrived it was parked in a covered area next to the ball park. Due to the height it had to be dug out causing it to flood everytime it rained.
Former Chief Miller also attended. He remembers going from one station to three and adding the manpower to over 65 firefighters.
Current Chief Kreger said they planned to put all the photos together and gather more history in hopes of one day having a Conroe Fire Museum.
Charles Womack who started in the fire service when his father was Chief at Northwest Volunteer Fire Department in North Houston, he moved on to Chief there and worked for former Spring Branch Fire Department now called Village Fire Department.
In the mid 70’s he went to work for the Woodllands Fire Department when the station was a mobile home on the dead end of Grogan’s Mil north of Woodlands Parkway and the station was just a shed.
He then went to Conroe when a friend of his became chief due to the better retirement program. He has since retired there but is still big in Fire Buff’s and collecting old fire trucks and restoring them.
The ceremony ended as one of Conroe’s newest 2010 engines and their first engine a 1929 American LaFrance sold to Needham in 1963 as their first truck drove out of the station and through the ribbon.