History of the WFPD


After a particularly difficult fire at the McDonald home on Batavia Road the community realized it needed its own fire protection system. In 1936 many local businessmen and the local priest formed the Warrenville Fire Protection Company #1, a non-taxing organization which quickly changed to the Warrenville Fire Protection Co.

The post depression era saw dwindling donations so the membership petitioned to become a taxing body. In 1939 a referendum was passed and the Warrenville Fire Protection District came into being. The First Trustees (governing body) were H.B. Evans, Frank Behr and Vincent Petit (1st Fire Chief).

The original firefighters were Vincent Petit, John Petit (Father and son owners of Petit’s Grocery Store), Frank Behr (Co-owner of Behr Brothers Chevrolet), George Heller (Local home builder), Elmer Terry, Charles Paver (Rural postal carrier and 2nd Fire Chief), James Dorio (Owner of Dorio Hudson Terraplane auto dealer), Clarence Meyer, Herbert Kleinwachter (town blacksmith), Harold Bollweg (plumber and later co-owner of J. H. Bollweg and Sons Plumbing), A.J. Fairbanks (switchman for Chicago, Aurora and Elgin RR), G.F. Halenza, Louis Mayer (town barber), and Henry Evans (local banker).

Many of the descendants of these first members are still active members today.

The population increased steadily but the 1950’s brought a housing boom with over 700 homes springing up from farm fields in the Arrowhead subdivision. In the 1960’s and 1970’s well over 1000 new homes were added with the Summerlakes, Winchester and Emerald Green subdivisions. With the increase in residents came a corresponding rise in requests for fire and medical assistance.

Fire Chief Clifford Johnson took over the reins as the Departments’ first full time chief in 1986. Chief Johnson replaced Charles Paver who had served since 1939.

The current headquarters fire station was completed in 1988 and in that same year the first contract paramedic/firefighters were hired. In 1992 the District hired three of its’ own firefighter/paramedics to supplement the six existing contract personnel. A day firefighter/paramedic position was added in 1994 to supplement manpower during the week.

The roster of Paid-On-Call (POC) firefighters and Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT’s) has fluctuated between 30-40 members for the last twenty five years with the current roster totaling five full-time District personnel (including the chief), six contract firefighter/paramedics, and forty seven POC’s, including a class of eleven new recruits.