Historic Fire Apparatus Returning to Grand Rapids (MN)

Since the 1950s, the Driscoll family has been in possession of a 1932 Dodge Graham-Paige fire truck. It was originally bought from the City of White Bear Lake after the vehicle was decommissioned after many years of service carrying water to fires. For the last several years, it’s been in Todd Driscoll’s garage in Grand Rapids, where it’s undergone some much needed renovation. And now it’s about to go back home.

“It had a thousand gallon tank on the back. It went to the fires, and then the pumpers hooked up to it,” said Driscoll, who bought the truck from his uncle in 1967.

After many years of family use, particularly as a wood hauling truck for Driscoll’s farm, the old fire truck is being donated back to White Bear Lake, to be cared for by the White Bear Lake Historical Society. 

Being a piece of White Bear Lake history, the 82-year-old fire truck is intended to be on display as well as used in the annual Manitou Days festival, which is the city’s annual celebration. Despite the many years of active use as a fire truck, and an additional couple generations the Driscoll family work vehicle, the words “White Bear Lake” can still be made out on the truck’s hood.

Not everything on the truck is original though. The seats and wooden running boards, for instance, are a few of the parts of the truck that have been renovated over the years. But as it was originally built for strength, many parts of the truck are made of cast iron, which is still doing just fine despite its age.

For more information, view www.virginiamn.com

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