Members of the Kalida Firemen's Association joined village officials in viewing the Kalida FIre Department's new heavy rescue vehicle - Putnam Sentinel
Members of the Kalida Firemen's Association joined village officials in viewing the Kalida FIre Department's new heavy rescue vehicle. (Photo submitted)

KALIDA — “The Kalida Firemen’s Association recently made a donation to the Village of Kalida Fire Department,” writes Kalida’s Fire Chief Dale Schulte in a news release to The Sentinel. “The Firemen’s Association donated a 2002 Spartan Metro Star Heavy Rescue Truck. This unit was purchased to replace the 1983 Chevy Step Van and will be contracted to serve as a Heavy Rescue Truck for the Putnam County Office of Public Safety.”

When speaking to Mr. Schulte later about the truck, he praised his community, and the annual Pioneer Days event in particular, for helping to make the truck purchase possible, saying, “Pioneer Days is instrumental in our department. The Fireman’s Association and Kalida Lions Club putting on Pioneer Days has a lot of positives to me. There’s Four Seasons Park that’s been developed with Kalida Lions Club. For us, three of our trucks in our station, including the one we just bought, our tanker, and our brush truck have all been purchased with Pioneer Days funds, and other fundraisers and donations.”

“The taxpayers traditionally have purchased two fire trucks. The rest of them have all been paid for by Pioneer Days and donations. The community supports us with Pioneer Days and we support them through giving back, buying equipment, and doing the best that we can do with it.”

According to Chief Schulte, the Fireman’s Association is also providing funding and man hours to make the truck fit for service.When asked about the benefits of the new truck, he says, “This truck, for one, is safer."

“From the fire departments standpoint it’s safer than the 1983 equipment van that we’re selling. It has more opportunities for passengers to ride with seatbelts on…This will allow us additional manpower. It also allows us to have more resources available to us,” Chief Schulte added.

According to the press release, the truck includes, “Multiple power plants to run extrication tools, a pto driven generator capable of producing 30 kw, two light towers, extension ladders, breathing air fill station, and a self-contained breathing apparatus.”

Kalida is also contracting with the county for use of the truck. “The village is providing the truck,” Chief Schulte says. “The county will be using it for their runs, for heavy rescue runs. In lieu of having a separate truck, they’ll be paying us.”

“It does help us out financially. It starts a fund for replacing the truck for the next time. But, it also helps us with space out here [at the Kalida Fire Station]. Things are a little tight. We’ll combine two trucks into one, and free up a little space.”

When asked if there is anything specific he would like the reader’s to know, Chief Schulte responds, “The Firemen’s Association would like to thank the many Pioneer Days patrons who help make this purchase possible.”

The 147th annual Pioneer Days festival will take place September 5-8 in downtown Kalida, on the square, and in the surrounding streets. This OVERSET FOLLOWS:year’s Pioneer Days festival theme is: “Celebrating 185 years in Putnam County: Family, Fun, Faith & Farming.”