Fire District History:
In 1978 Ernie Braswell, Dick Schmidt, Keith Schultz, Klein Calvert, Orville Barton and Jim Perry where determined to improve the fire protection in the western third of Taney County. The Branson-Rockaway Fire District was formed, which followed the Branson School District boundaries.
In the early 1980's there was a need to improve the fire protection in the Oakmont (southwest corner of Taney County) area and the Oakmont Fire Protection District was formed.
Over time several issues came about the fire protection in Branson. The straw that broke the camels back was a flue fire where too many firefighters responded and left large areas of the district uncovered.
So it was decided to separate the fire protection for Branson, which eventually lead to the formation of a new Fire District.
On November 4, 1982 the voters formed the Western Taney County Fire District, protecting the majority of the western third of Taney County, which was a merger of the Branson-Rockaway and Oakmont Fire Districts, excluding the Cites of Branson and Hollister and some Hollister Rural area. The District officially started to operate on January 1st in 1983, with. Klein Calvert as the first Fire Chief.
On April 7, 1998 the fire district annexed a large area including the areas of Hwy J and JJ from the Hollister Rural area, which added an additional 50 sq. miles to the southwest corner of the fire district.
In 2000 the fire district annexed the area of Acacia Club road adding an additional 10 sq. miles to the district, which was the remaining Hollister Rural area.
On October 15, 2003 the Fire District merged with the Hollister Fire Department, now making the Fire District also Hollister's Fire Department.
Which brings us to today, we are covering 200 square miles from 12 fire stations. A lot of things have changed over the years, however one thing still remains the same—we provide the protection to the people with a dedicated force of volunteer firefighters that care about there community and are there in a time of need.
Fire Chief History:
November 8, 1982 through December 13, 1983 Fire Chief Klein Calvert
December 13, 1983 through May 8, 1984 Fire Chief Mark Gordon
May 8, 1984 through July 15, 1985 Fire Chief Ron Smith
July 15, 1985 through October 16, 1986 Fire Chief Greg Strahm
October 16, 1986 through July 1, 1994 Fire Chief Bob Hasbrook (first paid chief)
July1, 1994 through present Fire Chief Chris Berndt