HISTORY OF THE PORTALES FIRE DEPARTMENT

   Fire 1  Fire 2


1909

  • Township of Portales, NM organized January 5th.
  • Fire Committee formed for the protection of property and lives of citizens by February 10th.
  • April 6th resolution introduced by Trustee James Priddy authorizing purchase of the first truck and fire hose from Howe Engine Company of Indianapolis, Indiana for $1789.60.
  • April 7th B. Blankenship moved that the town purchase 600 feet of 2.5 inch hose from Eureka Hose Company.
  • April 9th two committees formed to examine needs for housing and care of fire equipment and the new fire engine.
  • April 12th James Priddy moved that the town build a dirt tank for a water reservoir for use in fire fighting. This was completed by April 20th, 1909.
  • April 23rd, the first officers for the Portales Fire Department appointed under the provision of Ordinance # 15.
    • Fire Chief: Jeff Hightower
    • Assistant Chief: Ed Boucher
    • Treasurer: A.P. Moody
    • Foreman-Hose Department: Jim Turner
    • Foreman-Hook and Ladder: Fred Crosby
    • Chief Engineer: Lou Blankenship
    • Assistant Chief Engineer: Voyd Stone
    • James Priddy moved that the Fire Chief be allowed Fifteen Dollars per month for expenses incurred in the maintenance of the fire equipment.
  • May 7th the board agreed to sign a contract with Wilton Engine Company of Saint Paul Minnesota to purchase a hose cart and a hook and ladder for the price of $350.00
1912

  • Jeff Hightower reappointed Fire Chief.
1914

  • Portales Fire Department sponsored fund raising carnival to raise funds to purchase necessary fire equipment.
1915

  • Fire Chief Jeff Hightower resigns and Banscom Howard was appointed as Fire Chief.
1919

  • November 24th, D.W. Cooligan appointed Fire Chief.
1920

  • July 20th, Banscom Howard appointed Fire Chief.
1921

  • March 1st, a new fire truck was purchased from Universal Garage for $658.00.
1922

  • Portales Fire Department Volunteer Fire Fighters:
    • Fire Chief: Banscom Howard
    • Members: Malcom Trout C.J. Whitcomb Eagle Henderson
    • Deacon Jones Lee Langston Roy Wheeler
    • Homer Compton Jim Warnica Frank Seigner Fields
    • R.K. Graham Claud Swan
1923

  • The town of Portales contracted with Johnston and Young to construct a fire station for the price of $2897.85.
  • The town of Portales purchased another fire truck from American La France Engine Company for the price of $1068.35.
1925

  • Banscom Howard stepped down as Fire Chief and E.B. Black was appointed as Fire Chief
1926

  • Portales Fire Department Volunteer Fire Company Officers:
    • Fire Chief: E.B. Black
    • Foreman Fire Department: L.W. Westerman
    • Foreman Engine Company: Paul Parks
    • Foreman Hose Company: E.T. Burleson
    • Foreman Hook and Ladder Company: W.G. Barton
  • First siren owned by the town purchased in July of 1926 from the Sterling Siren Fire Alarm Company for $106.00
1928

  • January 17th, the first 12 fireman suits bought for $50.50 from the Joyce Pruit Company.
  • March of this year a new 500 gallon pumper purchased for the price of $5750.00.
  • May of this year J.Carl Yoachum appointed as Fire Chief and A.C. White appointed as Assistant Chief. Later that year A.C. White was appointed as Fire Chief.
1948

  • Newman Carter appointed as Fire Chief
1954

  • First paid firefighter hired by the city.
1972

  • Paid Fire Fighters hired by the City of Portales.
  • Five pumpers at the Portales Fire Department.
  • Fire Chief Newman Carter retires form the department and is replaced by Dub Owens and was later followed by Curly Williams as Fire Chief.
1974

  • First ambulance purchased with EMS services started.
1975

  • Mike Gray took over as Fire Chief at the age of 22 as the youngest Fire Chief in the United States.

1978

Theatre

1983

  • Mike Gray left the Portales Fire Department and Floyd Cooper was appointed as interim Fire Chief.
1984

  • Mike Miller is appointed as Fire Chief of the Portales Fire Department on August 27th.
1984

  • Special Skills in Manual Defibrillation at the Intermediate level started.
1987

  • New Fire Station at 301 South Ave C constructed
1989

  • Special Skills in Endotracheal Intubation at the Intermediate Level started.
1993

  • Johnny Johnson is appointed as Fire Chief of the Portales Fire Department.
1995

  • Paramedic level EMS services initiated at the Portales Fire Department.
1996
  •    Firefighter Dicky Massey Retired.
1999
  • Captain Gary Watkins and Firefighter Jim Wood Retired.
2000
  • Fire Chief Johnny Johnson Retired.
2001

  • Captain Arly Hamner Retired.
  • Steve Beaty is appointed as Fire Chief of the Portales Fire Department.
2002
  • Battalion Chief Alan Wofford Retired.
2004

  • Fire Chief Steve Beaty Retired.
  • Jesse Mowrer is appointed as Fire Chief of the Portales Fire Department.
2005

  • Fire Chief Jesse Mowrer Retired.
  • Raul Muniz is appointed as Fire Chief of the Portales Fire Department.
2007

  • John Bridges is appointed as Fire Chief of the Portales Fire Department on July 30, 2007.
2009

  • Fire Chief John Bridges and Battalion Chief Mickey Hargrove Retired.
  • Gary Nuckols is appointed as Interim Fire Chief of the Portales Fire Department on November 27th 2009.
2010

  • Gary Nuckols is appointed Fire Chief on February 20, 2010.
  • Portales Fire Department takes delivery of a 6,000 gallon Semi Water Tanker on February 2010
  • Lieutenant Harlin Stobb Retired
2013

  • Captain Mike Inge is appointed full time Fire Marshal on August 1, 2013.
  • Portales Fire Department takes delivery of a new 100 foot platform aerial apparatus on October 2013.
2016

  • Brenda Fenton started her career with the City of Portales 45 years ago with the Police Department and has been with the Fire Department 31 years.
  •  Battalion Chief Mike Golden Retired.
2018

  • On December 16th, Brenda Fenton retires from the City of Portales as the EMS Billing Specialist at Portales Fire Department after 46 1/2 years of service.
  • On August 18th, Captain Mike Inge retires from the Portales Fire Department as the Fire Marshal.
  • Portales Fire Department moved from having a 24 hour on and 48 hour off shift schedule to being 48 hours on and 96 hours off.
  • In October, Scott Candalaria is appointed to he role of Fire Marshal.
2019
  • Fire Chief Gary Nuckols and Battalion Chief Shannon Lee Retired.
  • Timothy J. Cathey Promoted to Fire Chief.
2020
  • Battalion Chief Lance Hill Retired.
2021
  • Portales Fire Department Station 2 at 1223 West Ivy Completed.                  Fire Tradition
CURRENT

  • The Portales Fire Department is staffed with 24 Operations level personnel consisting of 3 Battalion Chiefs, 3 Lieutenants, 3 2nd Lieutenants, and 15 Firefighters, the Fire Chief, Clerk and an Administrative Secretary/Billing Supervisor.
Ms Patty