Firehouse Friday: Aurora Fire Department


"It started out in a small town and ended up in a big city. I told my wife that when I retire we're going back to a small town and that's what we did," said Aurora Fire Chief Mike Gallagher.

Aurora has a lot of truck traffic in the area all year long, and at times, the department is there to help:

"You get a lot of drivers though here that that their dispatchers don't realize they look on a GPS and say that the shortest distance between Cincinnati and Winchester Virginia is across route 50; well you got four mountain ranges and you've got guys that's never driven in the mountains, particularly in the snow. In the winter time, which we have a long winter we'll get guys coming up here that don't have chains for the trucks, if they do have them don't know how to put them on. What are you doing on this mountain? If you go off the side it's 2000 feet to the creek," said Gallagher.

Although they don't have a high call volume, Superstorm Sandy in October 2012 more than made up for it.

"We literally from the bottom of this mountain up though our area had thousands if not millions of trees down. Some people went without power up to a month. Some roads didn't get cleared for three or four weeks. We served meals for nine days lunch and dinner, had people come here. We also took meals out to people who couldn't get here. We had a couple staging areas where people knew we would be there at a certain time and would bring the meals to them. We also ended up holding the elections here for four different election districts."

The department is having a Gun Bash on August 9 to help the community in the event of future emergencies.

"The gun bash we have coming up and the ones we've had the last couple of years that money is in a separate account, and that's what we're aiming to do is take that money and be able to make a shelter for the people in this community that support us, and then they support us and the gun bash supports us and all our dinners and the only way we're going to be able to give back to them."

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