Back in 1976, the community members of Plantersville and Stoneham decided they needed a fire department. They held a community meeting at the Masonic Lodge here in Plantersville. Officers were elected the same night. President Bill Lightsey, Vice President Bob Price, Treasurer Henry Botkin, Secretary Bobby Fuchs, Fire Chief Harold Webster and Fire Marshal Chris Siracusa. Directors were also elected that night; Bill Lightsey, Bob Price, Henry Botkin, Bobby Fuchs, Chris Siracusa, Robert Holt, Ann Merdian, Joe Imhoff and Frank Gabriel.
Once the leaders of the brand new Plantersville-Stoneham Volunteer Fire Department were established, the next item of business was completing an application with Texas Forestry Service for a 4-wheel-drive fully equipped fire truck for $5000.
The 1st Plantersville-Stoneham VFD Fundraiser was held on April 21,1977 at our first station (which was just a carport down the road from the Post Office). Despite heavy rainfall, they raised $1500 with Bar-B-Que and food sales. There were no cellphones or internet back then so they advertised the only way they knew how. They used CB radios to help attract tourists that were traveling through the area via SH 105.
On October 26,1977, a Board of Trustees were elected; Joe Imhoff, Ford Allphin, Bob Price, Dan Stephenson and Herny Botkin. This group signed a document to permit the fire department to use the land uptown in Plantersville across from the Baptist church for the station; this land is still currently our fire station.
Many years, bazaars, fires and faces have come and gone: but 43 years later, We Still Stand Strong, Respond to the needs of others and have dedicated firefighters that love their community and are willing to risk their lives to save another. Even though fires have changed, as well as the techniques to extinguish them, our fire department has evolved to become one of the finest of ALL volunteer fire departments in Grimes County.
Plantersville-Stoneham VFD has an ISO Class 8B rating for properties within the fire district that are 5 road miles from the fire station and an ISO Class 10 rating for properties outside the 5 road miles.
About ISO: ISO is a leading source of information about property/casualty insurance risk. ISO is an advisory organization, and insurers may use our information, modify it, or not use it, as they see fit. ISO is a member of the Verisk Analytics Family of Companies. ISO collects information useful in many aspects of insurance underwriting. That information includes evaluations of public fire protection, flood risk, and the adoption and enforcement of building codes in individual communities. Information on municipal services helps the communities with their efforts to manage and mitigate their risk. Through the Public Protection Classification (PPC) program, ISO evaluates municipal fire-protection efforts in communities throughout the United States. A community's investment in fire mitigation is a proven and reliable predictor of future fire losses. So insurance companies use PPC information to help establish fair premiums for fire insurance - generally offering lower premiums in communities with better protection. Many communities use the PPC as a benchmark for measuring the effectiveness of their fire-protection services. The PPC program is also a tool that helps communities plan for, budget, and justify improvements. ISO also evaluates sprinklered and non-sprinklered commercial buildings and residential properties and supplies important underwriting an rating information for insurers.