With two brand new fire engines, the Pueblo Fire Department continues to honor our nation’s heroes.
Two new pumpers were put into action for the first time this week. They replaced Engine 1 and Engine 8 that the department has used since 1988.
The patriotic trucks continue along with the department’s Red, White and Blue Campaign. Their goal is to have every truck repainted with the special red, white and blue paint scheme to honor both active and former military personnel.
Proudly displaying the names of the four Pueblo Congressional Medal of Honor recipients, 13 stars representing the medal ribbons, and commemorative coins, the fire chief says these trucks carry the “Home of the Heroes” message on wheels.
“They respond to thousands of calls every year, they go to training, to public community events, so they are in essence a rolling billboard or advertisement for the “Home of the Heroes,” and we are extremely proud of that and proud to carry that distinction for the city of Pueblo,” said Fire Chief Chris Riley.
The engines are Sutphen Pumpers. It cost about $727,000 for both. The city manager and city council approved the funds. The departments received them last month and they went into service this week. The newer engines have a larger cab and can hold more equipment. It includes a 500 gallon tank, and 1250 GPM pump.
“Ultimately the fire engines are to serve our citizens and we are very much committed to providing world class fire rescue services to the city of Pueblo and our community. And having these two fire engines is part of providing that world class service,” said Fire Chief Riley.
Fire department officials say the engines that they replaced could not be refurbished anymore. They say these new pumpers will last the department for a long time. They say in about 10 to 15 years they can be refurbished and will be like brand new.
The trucks that proudly display the American flag and our nation’s colors have received national attention over the years. In 2008 the department kicked off their Red, White and Blue campaign, and the first commemorative truck was displayed at the Fire Rescue International Tradeshow in Denver.
The department continues the Red, White and Blue campaign. Their goal is to replace all the old yellow engines with the new red, white, and blue engines. The new engines are bought with the custom paint job, while their old engines are being painted. It’s a campaign based solely on donations.
Including the two brand new engines, the department has bought four engines with the custom paint job. And they have raised enough donation funds to paint two trucks they already had. At this point, they are close to having enough to paint one more.
Fire officials hope people will get involved in the campaign again and help them raise enough to have their entire fleet painted in this patriotic design. Since 2008, they have received numerous private donations and even donations from businesses.
They have seven front line trucks that still need to be painted. It cost about $10,000 for each paint job. So far they have six engines complete. The two new engines will be on display in Denver at the International Association of Fire Chiefs International Conference.
The fund raising campaign is in cooperation with the Pueblo Medal of Honor Foundation. The Pueblo City Council approved the privately funded campaign to repaint all Pueblo Fire Department apparatus.
Anyone wishing to contribute to the project can make donations out to the Fire Truck Account and send them to the:
Pueblo Medal of Honor Foundation
P.O. Box 4040
Pueblo Co, 81003