After seeing five homes go up in flames in one year, residents of eastern Douglas County decided that that was “enough”. In April of 1984, the Eastern Douglas County Volunteer Fire Department (E.D.C.V.F.D.) was formed. Prior to that, residents who lived east of Bryant Creek had absolutely no fire protection. The first chief of our department was a woman, Mrs. Irene Buckwalter, pictured below.
The newly formed E.D.C.V.F.D. served over 600 miles in four counties, Ozark, Douglas, Texas and Wright county. The communities they served included Dora, Evans, Gentryville, Richville, Brixey-Rockbridge, Skyline, Drury, Goodville, Twin Bridges, Twin Knobs, Vanzant, Sycamore and Zanoni. A woman’s auxiliary was formed on June 11 of 1984 at the Gentryville Store. Their purpose was to raise money for the newly formed fire department. The ladies, including fire Chief Irene Buckwalter worked tirelessly over the year to raise funds to build E.D.C.V.F.D’s first fire station. In July of 1984, E.D.C.V.F.D purchased their first pumper (pictured below). In August of 1984, construction began on a small two bay brick building. Over the course of the first few years, “substations” formed at Dora, Brixey-Rockbridge, Skyline, and Twin Bridges.
- In 2001, a little over three acres of land was donated to the department right across from the existing building.
- In 2002, under Chief Steve Wilkerson, EDC received it’s first AFG grant for turnout gear.
- In 2010, the late Captain Lyle Luellen donated the funds to build our new three bay firehouse.
- In 2015, more than 30 years after inception, between a generous community and a grant, we finally had the funds to dig a well and install a 5,000 gallon below ground water storage tank and pump house. Prior to this, apparatus were filled at firefighters’ houses or out of creeks.
- In 2016, under Chief Chris Hammett EDC received our second AFG grant, which enabled us to purchase state of the art Scott SCBA packs and bottles, two equipped with thermal imaging in the masks.
- In January of 2017, EDC was able to purchase our first ever Hurst Jaws of Life set, used, and equip a rescue truck.
- In June 2017, under Chief Chris Hammett, with EDC acting as the host department, a county wideAFG grant for turn out was received.gear
- In March of 2017, ground was broken to begin putting in our bathrooms, the beginning of our bathroom, training room, office and kitchen project that is still ongoing today. With generous donations, we have been able to move forward with this project!