Longtime Fire District No. 1 chief mourned

Nov 10, 2021

The community is mourning the loss of longtime Fire District No. 1 chief Tom Brooks, who died Nov. 9. He was 93.

Brooks served as the district’s chief between 1950 and 1984, serving with his sons Scott and Kevin.

“Tom was an innovator for the district in many ways,” a Facebook post from Fire District No. 1 read. “A visionary by any standard.”

During his tenure, the district noted Brooks led the merging of Bliss Corner into District No. 1’s coverage area in 1971. He was also responsible for moving the fire district into its current station on Bridge Street.

In the mid ‘70s, Brooks was one of six members of the department to become an emergency medical technician — something completely new at the time.

He was also responsible for getting the fire district an 85’ snorkel articulating boom truck to reach buildings with multiple stories. Prior to that, the district noted it had only relied on the use of ground ladders.

“That snorkel truck was one of [a] very few in the area and was a frequent call for multi aid to local cities,” the department wrote.

Brooks also served with his sons Scott and Kevin and would give himself to many charitable organizations or would “lend a helping hand to any person who needed it with little to no recognition.”

“We cannot thank Chief Brooks enough for his dedication and service to the department and will make sure his legacy and contributions live on,” the post read.

Brooks is survived by his wife Eleanor, son Scott and his wife Jane, grandchildren Scott Jr. and Stephanie Miller, and his great grandchildren.