|KVFD names Honorary Capital Campaign Co-Chairs|
|By Krys Sipple|
|June 14, 2017|
The Keystone Valley Fire Department is pleased announce that three persons of note have agreed to serve as honorary co-chairs for their upcoming capital campaign for a new fire station in downtown Parkesburg. Senator Andrew Dinniman, Representative Harry Lewis, and Thaddeus “Bud” Wilde have all agreed to lend their considerable experience and influence to the campaign.
“We are thrilled to have these three gentlemen on board,” stated Fire Chief Robert Cazillo. “All are long-standing, integral members of our community. They understand that having an updated, efficient facility will help us with our mission of protecting our neighbors’ lives and properties.”
The Keystone Valley Fire Department began operations in 2013 by consolidating the Atglen Fire Company, the Parkesburg Fire Company No. 1, and the Pomeroy Volunteer Fire Company No. 1. In June of 2014, volunteers from the former Martin’s Corner Fire Company also joined KVFD. The consolidation of manpower and resources from these companies has resulted in increased efficiency and a decrease in redundant sources. Together, the combined department has over 50 volunteers and 20 career staff, and provides Fire/Rescue & EMS Services to approximately 11,000 residents in Parkesburg Borough, West Sadsbury Township, Sadsbury Township and Highland Township.
Despite the efficiencies obtained by the merger, consolidation also brought its own set of challenges. The majority of KVFD’s combined fleet, as well as its administrative offices, are now located at its main station at 329 West First Avenue in downtown Parkesburg. This facility has been in operation for over 82 years, and the aging infrastructure requires constant maintenance and upkeep. There is currently minimal space for both storage and for the necessary areas for fire department operations. The engine bays no longer meet current standards and the needs of the department’s newer apparatus, and conditions are less than ideal for personnel responding to calls, which discourages an already dwindling volunteer base. After several years of planning and deliberation, the decision was made to renovate the facility so that it could meet both current and future needs. The investment needed for this project is approximately $3 million. Keystone Valley Fire Department has already committed $875,000 of its savings to the project, and will be seeking tax-deductible gifts in order to offset the remaining cost.
An integral part of the KVFD renovation project is a partnership with the Parkesburg Veterans of Foreign Wars (VFW), Post #4480. With the VFW’s assistance, KVFD will construct a new Veteran’s Memorial Garden in front of the building. This area will commemorate all local veterans who have perished in every major conflict; will contain a 9/11 memorial to recognize the tragic events of 9/11/01; and will recognize local firefighters who have lost their lives in the line of duty.
“The Keystone Valley Fire Department, its members, patrons, and supporters are to be commended for working together to preserve and improve fire and emergency services for the region,” Senator Dinniman said. “The new station will be a key landmark in downtown Parkesburg, an indispensable institution within the larger community, and a centerpiece for the ongoing revitalization of the local business district.”