July 25, 2024
MBFD History

How We Started

The Mill Bay Fire Department, as with several others on the West Coast, started in the early 1940s as Civil Defense Guild Fire Halls – Mill Bay was Guild Hall #30.

Established in 1948, the Mill Bay Fire Department had two early fire chiefs in John Gardom and Fred Bartneck and not alot of history is available on the transition from the previous Guild.

It was Gordon Hayes who became the fire chief in 1950, and under his leadership, formed the Mill Bay Volunteer Fire Department as part of the Mill Bay Community League. Other chiefs of this era included Charlie Fitt and George Hauk.

In 1963, the Mill Bay Fire Protection District was incorporated under the Water Act by Letters Patent and in 1973, the Water Act was superseded by the Department of Municipal Affairs. Since the formation of the protection district, the first Chief under this jurisdiction was Bob Trousdale (1963-1968), followed by Bill Peters (1968-1975), John Anderson (1975-1980), Dave Atkinson (1980-1988), Darwin Generous (briefly 1988), Dave Garnett (1988-1990), Lloyd Rigler (1990-1991), Pete Balding (1991-2002), Don Sparks (2003), Terry Culp (2004-2011), Ron Beck (2011-2022) and now Chris McInerney (2022-present).

Mill Bay Fire respond to approximately 380 calls for service per year and have mutual aid agreements in place with surrounding fire departments.

Japanese waterwheel. (This photo is Retro style)
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