On Tuesday September 3, 2013 we were fortunate to have a visitor that brought stories of the past with him. Henry Thorpe was traveling through the area with his daughter who happens to be an Engineer with the San Diego Fire Department. Mr. Thorpe has a special tie to the Cortez Fire Protection District. Not only was he a Volunteer Firefighter, but his father Hank Thorpe served as the Fire Chief from 1943-1958.
Henry’s plan was to stop and take a picture of the station when they decided to ask for a picture with the fire engine. As we were conducting Hazardous Materials training we were in the station when they asked to get the picture. We invited him in and we were able to spend some time with him tell stories of the past and was able to see the official picture of his father as Fire Chief.
As part of his trip through Cortez, Henry was meeting with some of his old friends for lunch at the Elks Club where we showed up with our antique Seagraves fire engine. A fire engine that his father and one other gentleman traveled to Ohio to pick up new. Henry told stories again of responding to emergencies on the tailboard of that very unit. Henry was able to take a short ride in the antique fire engine and shared a couple more stories. Afterward he was presented with a couple items to remember his trip back home.
During Henry’s visit he commented on the various changes and improvements the Cortez Fire Protection District has gone through over the years. It is the dedication and commitment of Mr. Thorpe, his family and those like him that have allowed us to become the fine organization we are today. Thank you to everyone that has helped make our journey a success.
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