Willards Vol. Fire Co.
The Willards Volunteer Fire Company was established in 1927 by a small group of townsmen led by Everett (E.B.) Fuller. A 1924 American LaFrance Chemical truck was donated to the men and was housed in a small garage next door to Mr. Fuller. It is not clear who donated the truck. In 1929 the group officially chartered with Mr. Fuller elected as the Chief and President. Once the company was chartered, a new firehouse was built on property donated by charter member Paul F. Richardson. Mr. Richardson also donated all the lumber for the building with rest of the materials coming from others throughout the small community. Another charter member Walter Adkins led the construction of the building with several other people donating their time. Mr. Richardson once said of the fire company, “It was built by the local people to serve the local people.” Shortly after establishing a charter the company purchased their first new engine for $1000. It was a 1929 American LaFrance engine with a 350gpm pump and a 150 gallon water tank. This engine was known as Big John and served an area from Millsboro, DE to Snow Hill, MD. Then in 1939 the company purchased another American LaFrance engine this one having a 350gpm pump and a 300 gallon water tank. This engine is still in the possession of the company, it was completely refurbished for the 75th anniversary. In 1953 the company purchased an American LaFrance engine with a 500gpm pump and a 750 gallon water tank. In 1960 a surplus 1953 GMC Army tanker with 250gpm rear mount pump and a 1250 gallon water tank was acquired. This tanker was refurbished in 1975 and fitted with a front mount pump. In 1968 a Ford Young Engine was bought, this engine had a 750gpm pump and a 1000 gallon water tank. This Engine served the Willards community until 1996. In 1977 the company along with the Ladies Auxiliary purchased a 1973 GMC step van to transport members of the two organizations to the numerous parades and other various events they attended. This vehicle was later converted to a squad for the company and outfitted with a full SCBA cascade system. It served in this capacity until 1994 when a used 1978 cab over Chevy with an 18ft Swab rescue body was purchased to serve as our first rescue truck. In 1981 the company purchased a cab over Ford with a Pierce body, a 1000gpm pump, and 750 gallon water tank, this engine still serves as a front line piece on brush and farm machinery fires. In 1985 the company purchased its first new tanker, a 1000gpm front mount pump and a 4000 gallon water tank. It is still in service as one the most dependable tankers in the area. In 1996 the company purchased a Pierce Lance engine with a 2000gpm pump, a 750 gallon water tank. This engine carries 2200 feet of 5 inch supply line and portable rescue tools. In 2000 the company purchased a Pierce Saber medium duty rescue which carries a full line of Hurst Rescue Tools. In 2001 the company purchased a Ford F-350 and in 2004 fitted this truck with a custom built brush unit. In 2018 the company purchased a Rosenbauer Engine/Tanker with a 1500gpm pump and a 3,000 gallon water tank. The Willards Volunteer Fire Company started to provide ambulance service to the community in 1955 with a used ambulance donated to them from Salisbury Volnteer Fire Company. Through the years the company has had several units and currently runs custom built ambulances. They are staffed 7 days a week with a paid Paramedic which are supported by volunteer ALS and BLS providers. The Ladies Auxiliary was formed in 1942 and has been essential in helping the company throughout the years. The company has fought since its early days to maintain an operating budget in many ways. They had oyster and chicken dinners, carnivals, bar-b-que chicken by the roadside, and bingo for countless years to help supplement the state and county funding.
At this time the company has over 20 active members and 27 life members. The Chief is C.K. Twilley, the Deputy Chief is Ken Twilley Sr, the 1st Assistant Chief is Jim Milliner, and the 2nd Assistant Chief is Vaughn Rayne. The President is Dale White and the Vice President is Riley Scott. The Treasurer is Brenda Twilley and the Secretary is Vaughn Rayne. The company takes great pride in its history and looks forward to servicing the community for many years to come.