Girard Firefighters were summoned to W Liberty Street on the afternoon of Thursday, September 19, 1963. By the time the fire, which consumed 3 old buildings, 11 fire departments including Youngstown would aid in extinguishing the blaze. Two of the three buildings were condemned and had a history of small fires. The three buildings involved were the Hargraves residents, the former ARC Club and the former Morris Panner store. A six month old child was rescued from one of the buildings. During the incident, Youngstown Firefighter Charles Dolan was transported to he hospital for smoke inhalation. At one point in the blaze, Girard Mayor Phillip Cretella asked Youngstown Fire Chief Fred Bowser to take charge of the firefighting operations after the acting fire chief Ralph Ruggiero as well as 14 other members of Girard’s Fire Department were transported to North Side Hospital for smoke inhalation. Girard Fire Chief Norman Wearer was on vacation at the time of the conflagration. The incident was brought under control about 1:30pm and firefighters from Niles, McDonald, Liberty, McKinley Heights, Youngstown, Howland, Bazetta, Cortland and Farmington were all summoned to the scene. Damage was estimated at $30,000.
Photos courtesy of the Girard Fire Department IAFF Local 1220’s Instagram page.