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Griffith Volunteer Fire Department

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(Courtesy of the Griffith Historical Society)

Above are volunteer members of the Griffith Fire Department and their "1921 REO Speedwagon" ladder truck. The building in the background is the Town Hall.

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The Griffith Fire Department was formed in 1920 and was started with 25 members that used hand-pulled hose carts to fight fires. The Griffith Fire Department purchased their first fire truck in 1923, which was an REO Speedwagon vehicle.

Over the years, the members of the fire department have raised funds or donated work to help improve the fire department operations. In 1959, due to the increase of railroad traffic on the south-end of the Town, members of the fire department raised the funds and actually built the current Fire Station #2. The main station, Fire Station #1, was constructed in 1983; Fire Station #3 on the north end of Town was constructed in 1976. The Town of Griffith built Fire Station #1 and Fire Station #3 using a contractor. Over the years, more personnel were added to the membership of the fire department.

Current equipment includes:

1 Mack 2000 g.p.m. (gallons per minute) pumper
1 Mack 1500 g.p.m. pumper
1 American LaFrance 1500 g.p.m. pumper
1 Pierce 105 foot Aerial Ladder/1500 g.p.m. pumper
2 E-One 75 foot Aerial Ladders/1500 g.p.m. pumpers
1 Seagrave 1500 g.p.m. pumper
3 Chevrolet Brush Trucks
1 Chevrolet Suburban command vehicle
1 Chevrolet Tahoe command vehicle

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Above is the Pierce 105 foot Aerial Ladder/1500 gallons per minute pumper.


Griffith has three fire stations which are strategically located in the North, Central, and South areas of the town. Fire Station number 2 is located at 509 South Broad Street (photo below), near the Soccer field and South Park, and was constructed in 1959 by the Fire Department volunteers. Station number 3 is north of Ridge Road at 1600 North Indiana Street and was built in 1976. Fire Station number 1 (photo below) was constructed in 1983, and is located at 130 North Lafayette Street, directly behind the Town Hall and Police Department.

Roy Schoon was appointed Chief in 2012.

Prior to Chief Schoon, other Fire Chiefs and their dates of service were:

H. B. Richie (1920)
Joseph Miller (1921-1924)
Daniel Walters (1925-1929 and 1933)
Robert McFarland (1930-1932 and 1937-1948)
Nelson Mandenach (1934-1936)
Leo Miller (1948-1951)
William Kane, Sr. (1952-1980)
Elmer Plohg (1981-1982)
George Thiel (1983-2012)

The staffing level for the Fire Department is about 50 members, and all are volunteers. All members are Firefighter I/II certified in the State of Indiana and the department is also certifed in Hazmat (Hazardous Material) rescue and firefighting.

To become a member of the Griffith Volunteer Fire Department, an individual must be a Griffith resident between the ages of 18-35 and must fill out an application form. When there is an opening, applicants must pass a medical (physical) exam as well as an interview. New volunteers are placed on one year probation.

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The Main Fire Station Number 1 was built in 1983 and is located at 130 North Lafayette Street, directly behind the Town Hall and Police Station.


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Station number 2 is located at 509 South Broad Street and was constructed by the Fire Department volunteers in 1959. Fire Station 3 (not pictured) is located North of Ridge Road at 1600 North Indiana Street and was built in 1976.