“A lot of people may not have known about the things that happened in the 20’s, the 30’s, the 40’s, and the 50’s,” said John Taylor.
Many refer to him as the “Historian.” John spent 28 years with the Odessa Fire Department. He started researching the history back in 1988.
“When I was first meeting some of the fireman that were still alive and that were volunteer fireman in 1927, I got to hear their stories and see their photos. I decided back then, this has got to be preserved for the future. So, I started preserving it and it just continued.”
He wanted the pictures to have the names of our heroes along with them. That was so important to him!
The book is being sold on Amazon and is 522 pages. He waived all of the royalties from the book in order to make it affordable. The former fireman was more concerned about preserving the history.
You will also notice the book is from 1927-2011. Back then, they were called the Odessa Fire Department. They changed their name to “Odessa Fire Rescue.”
We also asked John what has changed over the decades in the world of firefighting.
“Back in the old days, they didn’t wear air packs for breathing air. They were called smoke eaters for a reason and we had a lot of fireman who died from cancer before they even got a chance to retire.”
John is also a veteran who served in the 8404 Fleet Marine Force Corpsman.
Thank you John for your dedication to helping people learn about the past!