Yesterday: Salisbury firemen, ladder truck from the 1940s

  • Posted: Monday, April 8, 2013 12:58 a.m.

Todd Stiller provided this photograph, which he believes came from the Salisbury Post sometime in the 1940s. The Salisbury firemen and city officials appear to be collected around a ladder truck. ‘The truck may be a 1942 American LaFrance aerial ladder truck,’ Stiller says. ‘The fire chief to the far right in front is Charles Burkett.’ Stiller also knows that the man in the upper left corner of the photograph on top of the truck is his grandfather, Carl Sells. ‘He was a United States Marine Corps drill instructor and served in the Pacific Theater in World War II,’ Stiller says. ‘The firefighter job came after he was discharged from the war.’ Two other men identified in the top row with Sells are Ben Wood (center) and Ray Shaver. Todd Stiller’s son, Casey Stiller, is a junior firefighter and intern with Locke Fire Department. Casey recently was interviewed as part of a story on the shortage of volunteer firefighters. In that story, Casey didn’t realize Sells, his great-grandfather, had been a fireman before him. ‘Casey inadvertently left out part of his family history that he didn’t know from three generations ago,’ Todd Stiler says, ‘but he was right about one thing: We are very proud of him and his career choice.’

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