Last updated: January 21. 2014 9:27AM - 781 Views

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On the morning of February 27th 1966, I was delivering the Sunday newspaper on the west end of Lima, when very dark smoke started billowing from the downtown area. The fire truck from Station 4 flew down the street shortly afterwards with firefighters I knew personally. After getting home and warmed up, WIMA radio and TV broke in and said Central Junior High School was on fire. The fire raged for seven hours and was called a dark day in Lima’s history.

I thought about this fire and situation the other day and how it intertwined my early childhood with present day events. The original Fire Station 4 was next to my home near the corner of High and Cole. I saw the men later in life at the grocery or church. Several of the firemen were my classmates’ fathers.

I wanted to be a fireman growing up. I moved to Elida and eventually became a Volunteer Firefighter/Paramedic. I realized firsthand the dangers of being a firefighter during my 10 years active duty.

Since November 2011, the Lima Fire Department has come under attack by the governor and state Rep. Matt Huffman. The governor took away $2 million dollars in Local Government Funds from the City of Lima. Matt Huffman, wanted to take away collective bargaining rights from LFD’s union and all the other Public Employees in Ohio.

We defeated the SB5 nonsense of union busting, but this vindictive administration will be back.

— Bo Huenke, Elida

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