Coin marks 50 years of change for CCFD | NevadaAppeal.com

Coin marks 50 years of change for CCFD

John Barrette
jbarrette@nevadaappeal.com

Fire Chief Stacey Giomi struck a commemorative coin at the Nevada State Museum and Mint Friday to mark 50 years of service for the city's paid fire department.

"In honor of all of you," Giomi said of the retired and in-service firefighters present, "we'll strike this coin." He was assisted by Ken Hopple, chief coiner at the state museum and historic Carson City Mint.

"Today is really historic because it's the 50th anniversary of the Carson City Fire Department," said Hopple.

Giomi's first strike was just one of several minted on Carson City's historic Press No. 1 in the old Mint part of the extended museum.

The department on a postcard-sized handout about the event said roots of the department trace to Nevada's 1863 territorial days, pre-dating Nevada's statehood 150 years ago, when the Warren Engine Company No. 1 was formed preceding the 1964 paid department. "In 1964, Carson City's population was less than 10,000 people," the event document reads. "Today we have more than 55,000 people and the department has changed to meet the demands of today's emergency services. The Carson City Fire Department is a full-service fire agency that provides fire and emergency medical services to residents and visitors."

After the coin-striking, in another room at the museum Giomi told a crowd Les Groth, for whom the Stewart Street fire station is named, became the first paid fire chief on July 1, 1964, and that marked the beginning of the paid fire service in Carson City as well as what was then Ormsby County. The county and city consolidated five years later.

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Giomi said Groth was paid $700 monthly with two-thirds of that coming from city government and a third from the county then.

Giomi recognized Driver-Operator Sam Saunders and Driver-Operator Byron Hunt for their work in pushing and putting together the 50-year ceremony and coin strike. "Thank you guys both, very much," said the fire chief.

Both Saunders and Hunt delivered brief remarks, with Hunt crediting his colleague and saying it was most appropriate to include retired fire service veterans and it was great the 50-year anniversary coincided with the Nevada Sesquicentennial marking 150 years of statehood.

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