Archive for February 5th, 2024

Boone County Fire Protection District #2

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The Boone County Fire Protection District #2 has responded to 155 calls so far this year, more than double the number of calls from last year.

Chief Brian Kunce said he’s trying to figure out why calls have spiked but knows it’s not because of the recent winter storms. A large majority of their calls historically are medical, something they are now investing in in just a few months.

The fire protection district is set to receive a second ambulance which they believe will make the increase in calls more manageable both for them and others in the area. The new ambulance is expected to be ready for operation on April 29th. 

“With the accidents that we have out here, we’re always using at least two and there’s been times where every ambulance in the county has been tied up just with a traffic accident, so we’ve got to call mutual aid from Winnebago County, McHenry, or DeKalb,” Kunce said. 

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Peoria Fire Department news

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It’s been 41 years since Peoria firefighter Vernon “Butch” Gudat died in the line of duty, but Friday, the department and his family members celebrated his legacy.

John Smith worked for the Peoria Fire Department for 29 years. After he retired, he picked up woodwork. His hobby of building tables started when Peoria Fire Chief Shawn Sollberger asked Smith to build a table for the new firehouse, Station 4.

Smith has finished several tables since then, the most recent being a dinner table for Fire Station 10 in honor of Gudat, where he was working when he responded to a fire in downtown Peoria on January 23, 1983. He died that morning in the line of duty.

Both of Gudat’s kids were at the reveal on Friday and say it’s amazing to see the fire department continuing to honor their dad 41 years later.

To this day, Vernon “Butch” Gudat is the last Peoria firefighter to die in the line of duty.

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