By Gilbert Hoffman
Sheldon Community Fire and Rescue, and Harris County Emergency Services District #60, opened an impressive new fire station, and training tower last Thursday morning.
The 15,000 sq. ft. fire station is the third station in the ESD#60 District, and with expansive growth of the area, the plan is to build two more and another to replace the existing station on C.E. King Parkway, according to Fire Chief Sydney Webb.
Webb presided over the grand opening ceremonies, and the ceremonial ribbon cutting and hose uncoupling for the two buildings.
Participating in the ceremonies were members of the ESD#60 board, with Helen Lauersdorf, president; and Fire E-board members, with Curtis Roane, president. Also speaking were “Pistol Reed” the son of Paul V. Reed, whom the training center is named for, and Judge Joe Stephens.
The Training Center is a tall 5-story building, to be used to train firefighters in multi-story rescues and fires. The fire station has room for six vehicles in three drive-thru bays. It also has offices, sleeping rooms, training and exercise facilities, and a day room with kitchen and TV.
In his remarks, Chief Webb recalled the history of the department, thus:
“64 years ago in 1955, Beaumont Road Volunteer Fire Department was formed by residents seeing the need for fire protection. These founding fathers made due with Homemade Fire Trucks and the like. Our Tanker/Pumper that you can see parked here was dedicated in 2014 to honor Beaumont Road Fire Department charter members and is dedicated in the memory of J.W. Perryman who served as Fire Chief in 1955.
“In 1965, a military veteran, Paul V. Reed, moved into the Sheldon Woods Community and saw the need for a fire department and ambulance service to serve this large East Houston suburb. In 1972, I joined the Department as a junior firefighter, I was 13 years old. In one capacity or another, I have served 47 years in this one department. Sometimes as Ambulance Chief, sometimes as both Fire and Ambulance Chief. The ultimate goal is to provide fire protection and helping the sick and injured.
“We know how important our first responders are. We’re proud to have this facility in our district, in a place that provides services not only to the Sheldon area but to the community at large being our neighbors like Channelview, Cloverleaf, Crosby, Highlands, Huffman, Atascocita and Eastex Fire.
“And I don’t want to leave out South Lake Houston EMS Department who also serve the ever-growing Sheldon area.”
The ceremonies concluded with a ribbon cutting by the North Channel Chamber, a hose uncoupling by the firefighters, refreshments, and tours of the new buildings.