DISTRICT HISTORY

Cold Spring-Crestview Fire Department

  • Early in the summer of 1943, notices were posted throughout the town urging all citizens to attend a meeting on June 25, for the purpose of organizing a civic club which would eventually become active in the promotion of a volunteer fire department.

  • Articles of incorporation were signed on June 30, 1943. Ed Velkey was named the first Fire Chief. The volunteers were now organized with 35 members, but there was still no firefighting equipment.         

  • In August 1943, the first engine was purchased from the City of Fort Thomas for $650.00. It was a used Ahrens Fox equipped with the old piston type pump. The first fund raising project was a carnival held on August 28th and 29th. The department netted $2,752.00 and the carnivals became a main source of income for many years.

  • In 1970, there was a need to expand the firehouse. Two additional bays were added onto the south side of the building, as well as expanding the second floor of the existing structure. The upstairs was large enough to be used for large meetings and was rented out for weddings, gatherings, etc., until the firehouse was torn down for the widening of US 27 in 1989.

  • For years the Highland Heights Fire Department provided ambulance service for the community. In 1972, the fire department placed into service its first ambulance, a 1971 Horton Pontiac.

  • 1990 saw the implementation of the volunteer pension plan. This was the first pension plan for volunteers in the county. It also began a new era for the department. Ray Dishman was appointed the first full-time firefighter in the department. The district also took delivery of its third Horton ambulance.

  • In 1991, Cold Spring-Crestview Fire Department was one of the first departments to hire a full-time female officer - Lt. Mary Clair.

  • In 1993, the Department celebrated its 50-year anniversary.

  • In 1997, the department administration was turned over to the Board of Fire District 2.

  • 1999 brought about the biggest change in the history of Fire District 2. In the previous year, the Highland Heights Volunteer Fire Department had been in negotiations with the City of Highland Heights to fund the operations of the department. There were numerous

meetings between both sides, with no results. Finally, officials from the city of Highland Heights approached Fire District 2 with the intentions of having the district annex the city of Highland Heights. In late 1999, an agreement was reached to annex the city of Highland Heights into Fire District 2. The Highland Heights Volunteer Fire Department then agreed to merge with Fire District 2. This created the new Central Campbell County Fire District.

Highland Heights Volunteer Department

  • Before June of 1939, the citizens of Highland Heights had to rely on emergency response units from northern cities of Campbell County. With newer developments in the city a need for emergency services was becoming seemingly clear. In June of that year the Dale Men’s club, a treasury of three hundred dollars, and a little help from a carnival fundraiser held that summer formed the Highland Heights Volunteer Fire Department. Soon after, a committee was formed to purchase a pumper and other necessary equipment for the apparatus.

  • By 1941, a new firehouse was built to house the department's equipment and this building later became the first city building for Highland Heights.

  • In 1962, a county ordinance was passed disallowing the fire department to raise money by having carnivals. In doing this the department joined with the city of Highland Heights. The city then took over the department’s financial obligations, charging the citizens a flat fee per household and business.

  • In the mid 1990’s the department was experiencing a personnel shortage due to the change in demographics of the city, family lifestyle changes and an increase in run volume. The Department was now responding to over 800 EMS and incident runs a year compared to only a few hundred in the 1980’s. The Fire Department, with the cooperation of the City, instituted the first incentive program in the county as a stopgap to hiring paid personnel. This program was successful for a few years.

  • In 1998 the Fire Department approached the city with a plan to hire paid personnel. The plan was to institute a payroll tax. A percentage of this tax could be used to fund paid personnel. There were many meetings held between the City and Fire Department but a program could not be agreed upon. The City approached Fire District Two with intentions of having them annex the city into their fire district and discontinuing the funding of the Highland Heights Fire Volunteer Fire Department.

  • In late 1999 the Highland Heights Volunteer Fire Department merged with Fire District Two to create the new Central Campbell Fire District. This was the first merger of fire departments in the county.

Central Campbell County Fire District

  • Committees were established between both Fire District 2 and Highland Heights Volunteer Fire Departments to coordinate the merger. A new name for the department was needed, as well as adding paid staff and a full-time chief. It was decided to call the new department Central Campbell County Fire District. One of the first tasks was to start the process of hiring additional full-time firefighter/emergency medical technicians to cover the Highland Heights station during the weekdays.

  • In early 2000, two additional full-time firefighters were hired to provide needed manpower during the daytime hours, Monday through Friday.

  • Gerald Sandfoss, a former volunteer firefighter from Highland Heights and a 28 year career veteran of the Fort Thomas Fire Department, was selected as the first full-time Chief. The merger was completed on July 1, 2000.

  • The Central Campbell County Fire District is responsible for providing fire and EMS protection to over 24,000 citizens in a 18-square mile area, including 15,000+ students on the campus of Northern Kentucky University, 1000 of which live in dormitories.

  • The district responds to over 700 fire/incident runs and approximately 1400 squad runs per year. The department is currently staffed by 17 full-time firefighters, 25 volunteer firefighters and a part-time administrative assistant.

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