The Lawton Constitution from Lawton, Oklahoma on August 25, 1963 · Page 31
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The Lawton Constitution from Lawton, Oklahoma · Page 31

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Lawton, Oklahoma
Issue Date:
Sunday, August 25, 1963
Page:
Page 31
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THE LAWTON CONSTITUTION-MORNING PRESS, Sunday, Aug. 25, 1963 Become Only Legend Drillmaster Tommy Perkins explains the science of fire fighting 1 to several city firemen stationed in the downtown headquarters. This is an almost daily task task for the men. Ke\" Arnold demonstrates on fireman Al Adamson the art of using oxygen on the many heart patients the fire department's rescue unit transports to city hospitals. A r n o l d a n d Adamson a r e r e g u l a r members of the rescue unit It's time for action every time the emergency phone rings at the fire department Dispatcher S. T. Smith answers all calls that come in to the department and dispatches men from any of the four stations to battle the reported fire. ^!5£|"B5*jg»|g« ^iSft^f^tey ^Miiitimivimffimil Chow time is always a welcome event around the station house. From left to right are Rex Arnold, Ken Perkins, J. W. McCaig (serving coffee), Lewis Morris, Joe Wade and R. B. Mitchell, the chef for the day. Emergencies, Chores, Bells Keep 'Em Busy Bv RANDY COI-UEH Sldff \Vrllw 'OT SO MA.VT years ngo It wasn't an u n f a m i l i a r sijrhl lo pass Hie cily fire station, and see iwo or Ihrpc firemen snoozing on park benches, anolher couple playing cards, and maybe another in a corner peltinE n slray Dalmatian, who seemed to hang around nl menl lime. An old limer who hadn'l been around lh« station house for 20 years probably wouldn't recoc- nized the place now because, a.' firemen will lell you. there isn't. much lime /or loafing. Yes. there are still the park benches and the card and pool tables, bul a person might find them a little dusty from lack ol use. As Drill MuMer Tommy Perkins puts H, "Just about the only t i m e you see our men sininE around now. doing nothing. Is when they hnve put in a lull day." "We 50 lo bed prc-tiy wirly and get up it around 7 a.m., ihe next momlnc M wp can have cvrryUiin;; lookinn nice before anyone drives by the sin- lion on their way lo work," lie said. A usual riay Marts out with an enrly morninc brriik/asl prepared by a coupk of She men; roll call n f l e r Ihe morninc. mew-li duly assignments for tlie dnj', and of course the morning clean up chores. SELDOM A DAY coes by that the Ihree dj/fercu; fire truck cre^^'s /rom Ihc downtown unil don't co through their various trnlninff exercises. This consLilx of niising a 50 foot ladder and rrusinp. i; untlJ It rtflchcs the lop of the fjre station. Kircmen wilj lell you this is no easy (cat, since It lakes six well muscleH lircmcn lo even Ret Ihe ladder off a truck. Another regular training rou- 1inc is for a fireman to jet alop 1hc Iwo-slory station and jump in:o n li/e net held by eiRht /cl- losv fire fJK'nlcrs below. Pcrlcins explains Ihis is done to bcnetn the men below and 10 teach them the proper use of the net. Only once in Ihc history of the fire department, has the net been used, but it saved lives then. Practicing putting their new pumper into operation is also a daily task of (.he Bremen. The ciiy owns ten different trucks, and they arc used regularly /or traininK. Many days the Lawton firemen are unable lo parritipate in the training exercises because of the vast number of calls that come through the department. Luckily, most of the emergency messages are false alarms, and many are small frrass blazes that can be extinguished in a matter of minutes, but nevertheless firemen are there In short order to deaden the Dames. ANYONE who might still think a fireman has the easiest job of ail professions/ has stayed home on- a wintry night when a 1 downtcMTi buildinR has gone up in .flames. Less than a year ago two firemen had .to be rushed to city hospitals . with near /rost bite whan the heavy uniforms they were wearing, froze. One ot the firemen was -injured when his hands became frozen to a water hose. Cily firemen still haven't forgotten one o[ their men who was' killed when the truck he-was in collided with another truck when the huge'./ire.engine was on an emergency run. When a Irirgc' building · burns to the ground there's often not a word ; about the'usual several men who have to be treated because they received'too/.much smoke In their lungs, . suffered burns or were cut trying to open · a window. · · ' · . . . · No, 'the .day at. the lazy fireman has long since been for- '. gotten: Today-he is a professional man/.who..:doesn't.mind-risk- ing his life'anytime you.call him. . ' Six men are used to handle the big, 50 foot ladder that is used quite often by the department. J. W, McCaig is shown climbing to the top as Drillmaster Tommy Perkins looks on. Company officer J. W. McCaig inspects three of "his men as they go through an exercise on the department's new pumper. Watching the gauges is R. B. Mitchell and staxtding behind-with oxygen equipment'are'Lewie Morris'and .Joe.Wade; · · '",,· '. · ·'·'-. .','· ·,.-·:.·.'·' ;·'"·:,;-·:·.-..:.·.:·. .',·:.·'.·· Staff Photo* by It looks'r.like recess but.fireman Kenneth;Perkms : v^ teU.ybu.ii's.not much of'a.J)\ea-. sure jumping from a building into a net/'Eight; men- are'"used 'to catch the jumper.

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