Retired Tulsa Firefighters Hope To See Memories In Museum

Tuesday, March 17th 2015, 5:57 pm
By: News On 6

The campaign to open Tulsa's first Firefighter Museum continued Tuesday at the Fire Alarm Building with an open-house.

The theme on St. Patrick's Day was "Bringing in the Green," and there was a pretty good turnout.

3/17/2015 Related Story: Wear - And Bring - The Green To Tulsa Firefighter Museum Open House

The organizers hope enough money can be raised to turn the old building into the future Tulsa Firefighters Museum.

In a room full of current and former firefighters, a few of the oldest members of the Tulsa Fire Department stick out, like 93-year-old Jack Sanders and 90-year-old George Morrell.

Being back in the Tulsa Fire Alarm building and seeing some of their old gear brings back memories for the men.

"I spent a lot of time with those on [boots], and then they are not the most comfortable thing in the world," Sanders said.

He still remembers the day he told his wife he wanted to be a firefighter.

“She said, you got to be kidding, you got to be kidding," he said.

1/23/2015 Related Story: Effort Underway To Create Tulsa Museum Honoring Firefighters, History

Sanders joined TFD back in 1946.

"Big fires are always memorable, like the coliseum fire; that sticks in everybody's minds that lives in Tulsa and so on," he said.

Morrell spent his days on the fire department driving the truck.

“I think it's the best job on the fire department,” he said.

Both are thrilled some of their memories could soon be preserved, if the first TFD museum opens.

“If you don't have something to remember you'll forget, and then, after you forget it, you wish you would have done something about it," Morrell said.

Harlan Wallace has been collecting TFD memorabilia for decades.

"I've watched our history be sold at the flea market, garage sales, so it is disappearing,” he said.

Sanders said since he's already lived this long he hopes to stick around to see the day the fire museum opens.

“I certainly hope that I can patrol these halls and look at it all and say ‘I remember when we talked about that,'" he said.

A few hundred thousand still needs to be raised but events this brings organizers one step closer to opening up the museum.