The Ladies Auxiliary Unit of the North Greece Fire Department was chartered by the state of New York in the winter of 1944. It was through the efforts of Marion Gould and Ed Cleveland, president of the fire department, that this complex task was achieved.
Original charter members were Edna Badge, Betty Cabic (Vatter), Luella Cabic, Eleanor Cleveland, Gould, Ruth Henchen, Rose Kluth (Toal), Dell Kuhn, Marguerite Lemcke, Florence Lockner Bell, Theo Lockner, Ada Miller, Carolyn Miller (Fisher), Myrtle Rickman, Charlotte Roberts, Rita Sine, Nola Speer, Rowena Thompson, Eleanor Vatter (Horgan), Esther Waldock, Florence Whelehan, Elsie Wolff and Del Wood.
As stated in their constitution, the Auxiliary’s object of the organization is “to assist the North Greece Fire Department in every way possible and to be of service to the community.” To this end, the ladies in the infant organization purchased a copper clothes wash boiler. One of the firemen installed a spigot and this vessel, full of hot coffee, was transported to the scene of working fires throughout the early years. During one particularly disastrous dairy barn fire, the boiler was placed on the burning embers of the barn beams to keep the coffee hot on a 4 below zero morning.
No organization operates without money, and the Auxiliary was no exception. Numerous fundraisers were conducted through the years, including musical shows in the late ‘40s and ‘50s. The shows were so popular that they were annually “taken on the road” for patients of the Batavia and Canandaigua veterans hospitals. Profits were used to purchase uniforms for the marching unit. This group performed in parades during the ‘50s and early ‘60s, donning hats, capes and skirts. As the cost of uniforms increased, the Auxiliary stopped marching and used their money to furnish and improve the kitchen at the old House No. 1 on Latta Road. Now, the Auxiliary marches in Spencerport and Hilton parades.
The Auxiliary, under the leadership of Patty Williams, took over fundraising by doing the annual garage sale at the old Station No. 1. This quickly became a tradition at North Greece. No discarded item was safe, nor was any fireman who owned a truck immune from a call to pick up items for the sale. This effort enabled the Auxiliary to make numerous contributions to the firehouse kitchens and — since 1978 — to the Firemen’s Pavilion.
The Auxiliary participates in the department’s Breakfast with Santa by purchasing gifts for the children and cooking the meal. Before the annual Easter egg hunt, the Auxiliary serves breakfast to the workers. If there is a large fire, the Auxiliary will provide breakfast, lunch or dinner for fill-in crews or the firefighters.
Members go to nursing homes for craft sessions with residents or ice cream socials. For the past four years, the Auxiliary is found ringing bells for The Salvation Army kettles at Walmart Plaza. They are known to sing to the shoppers.
The Auxiliary meets monthly and has 23 active members.