Saturday, April 10, 2021

Old Friend to the Fire Service Returns Home to Schuylkill County

On Saturday, the Goodwill Fire Company and Schuylkill Historical Fire Society welcomed Frackville's old ladder truck back to the County after being away for almost a decade.

In 1974, the Goodwill Fire Company purchased a brand new American Lafrance Ladder Truck that would serve Frackville and the surrounding communities for over 2 1/2 decades.

In 2011, the apparatus sustained a debilitating transmission and engine issue that would force the company to purchase a new ladder truck.

The old Ladder 43, eventually sold to Tom Wagner of Beavertown, Snyder County, who repaired and maintained it ever since. Before transferring, Wagner promised to notify the fire company if he ever thought of selling the truck.

Fast forward to 2021, after taking care of the truck for a decade, Wagner wanted to sell it and kept his promise and called the Goodwill.

The Goodwill Fire Company, unable to purchase a truck that would never see service again, reached out to the Schuylkill Historical Society, which collects and maintains Schuylkill County Apparatus after they retire from the fire service.

The Historical Society agreed to buy back the truck from Wagner at the same price he bought it ten years prior.

On Saturday, Goodwill Fire Company members George Anthony and Matthew Swartz traveled to Snyder County and brought the truck home.

Anthony said the truck ran as good as it did a decade ago when it was sold. 

Members of the fire company will continue to maintain and service the apparatus hoping to use it in parades and other events.

Even within minutes of arriving back at the station, members began doing their truck checks and testing the apparatus.

The members were certainly happy to have "the old girl" home and hope to have it for years to come.

The truck will spend Saturday night at the Goodwill Fire Company before they move it to the Historical Society on Sunday.

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