JC Brown Archives

July 1990

Mystery simmers over ’89 blaze

July 20th, 1990|

Careless smoking was originally blamed for the London fire that claimed six lives but a 10-moth investigation found that may not be the case.

Almost a year to the day after a house fire killed six Londoners, the cause of the tragedy is now shrouded in mystery, prompting calls by the family of the victims […]

August 1984

Firemen battle blaze at Velvet Touch

August 24th, 1984|

Firefighters were at the scene of a blaze at a Florence Street furniture stripping shop early today trying to contain flames before they reached chemicals stored on the premises.

The fire broke out shortly before midnight at The Velvet Touch of London 873 Florence St.  Firemen manning a total of six pumpers and two ladder […]

Rash of illnesses plagues fire department

August 17th, 1984|

By Tony Hodgkinson of the Free Press

The London fire department could be in “dire straits” financially before the year is out, Assistant Deputy Chief Bruce Tapp warned Tuesday after a fire station in east London was put out of service for three hours.

Tapp said he felt the department could remain within its budget of […]

June 1984

Fireman slightly injured

June 9th, 1984|

Fireman slightly injured in Elizabeth Street fire London firefighters – one of whom received burns—searched everywhere for a boy thought to be still inside a house extensively damaged by fire at 632 Elizabeth St. Friday night.

But Jason Albert, 5, son of Val Albert, 24, who resides in one of four apartments in the house, […]

January 1984

High-Rise Fires

January 22nd, 1984|

High Rise Fires, Stay calm, stay alive
It’s 2 a.m.  The dispatcher leans back on his chair and stretches, still keeping one eye on the alarm panel in front of him.  A panel light flashes:  fire.  He notes the location of the triggered alarm box and alerts the closest fire station.

At the station, an organized flurry […]

Rescue Operation

January 17th, 1984|

London firefighters work to free an injured woman motorist from the wreckage of a car at Adelaide Street and Kipp’s Lane Monday night while ambulance staff bring up a stretcher.  Three people went to hospital from the two-car, head-on crash shortly before 11 p.m.  City police rerouted busy Adelaide Street traffic until the debris […]

Firefighters bail of windows

January 6th, 1984|

Firefighters flee through window as flames fill house stairwell

A flame filled stairway gave three London firefighters anxious moments Thursday when they were ventilating smoke from the second floor of a Grey Street house.

Forced back by the sudden flash in the stairwell, acting Captain Paul McPherson and firefighters Jim Holmes and Dave Morden retreated to […]

August 1983

Passers-by help rescue man

August 6th, 1983|


By Kathryn Young of the Free Press

Two London men driving by a burning Emerson Avenue home helped to rescue the sole occupant Friday evening after noticing smoke and flames shooting out of an air conditioner in a side window.

“I went to the side door and just started pounding on it,” said Blake Milmine who […]

July 1983

Damage Extensive

July 9th, 1983|


March 1983

40 Minute Vehicle Entrappment

March 24th, 1983|

Spectators cheer as driver rescued from car crash in 40-minute struggle
Spectators cheered and clapped in the gathering gloom and chill Wednesday evening as London police and firefighters, using the “jaws of life,” freed a driver from his mangled car after a 40-minute struggle on Wharncliffe Road North. 

The driver was conscious and talking to his […]

Close Call? It couldn’t be closer

March 24th, 1983|

A London fire department rescue until struggles to free an injured 19-year-old University of Western Ontario student from his mangled car after the vehicle wrapped itself around a utility pole on Wharncliffe Road North in London on Tuesday night.  One of the driver’s legs can be seen beside the pole.  Capt. Bernie Larkin of […]

February 1983

Mother & son perish in fire

February 16th, 1983|

An invalid London mother and her eight-year-old son died in their blazing home Tuesday morning, after the woman had reported a basement fire by telephone.

Fire takes life

February 9th, 1983|

November 1982

Firms rushing to open again after huge fire

November 22nd, 1982|


Owners of a handful of downtown London businesses are scrambling to bounce back after a $1-million fire which scarred a west-end section of Dundas Street early Saturday.  Most of them expect to reopen today.

But some will be in temporary quarters because the blaze, which spewed dense smoke over the downtown are for most of […]

August 1982

Crash injures three

August 18th, 1982|

One of three men injured with two cars and a light truck collided Tuesday at Elmwood Avenue and Wharncliffe Road was listed in critical condition in Victoria Hospital.   A second unidentified man also was detained in hospital.  Police said two of the vehicles were southbound on Wharncliffe and one vehicle was westbound on Elmwood […]

June 1982

Compensation delays firemen’s return

June 19th, 1982|

Abandoning forced retirement at age 60 within the London fire department and reinstating two retirees may not end the local dispute.

London district human rights officer Walter Burns said Friday further conciliation talks with the city may be necessary in light of board of control’s action earlier this week.

The board has recommended city council, which […]

Platoon Chief wins new life at 63

June 17th, 1982|

Forced retirement battle finally over

The news clippings tell the story.

“Retirement at 70 advocated as option” says a headline on an article taped to the window of the credit union office.  “Pressure beginning to mount for change in retirement age,” says the other.

For Fred Holmes, a retired 63-year-old fireman and part-time manager of the London […]

March 1982

Apartment fire forces evacuation

March 30th, 1982|

Firemen drop soggy chunks of insulation from the third-storey window of an apartment building at 1586 Ernest Ave., Monday afternoon, after a fire was extinguished.

February 1982

Firemen near police parity

February 16th, 1982|

London’s first-class firefighters will earn almost $30,000 this year, slightly less than the coveted parity with their city police counterparts.

City council Monday night approved a one-year contract for 1982, which will boost a first-class firefighter’s salary 10.31 per cent to $29,621 from $26,852.  A first class police constable earns $29,800.

Firefighter association president Gord Sturdy […]

November 1981

Arbitrator puts firefighters just shy of $27,000 pay goal

November 24th, 1981|

By Tony Hodgkinson

An arbitration board report released Monday gives London firefighters a 15 1/2 per cent pay increase for 1981, but keeps them just under the $27,000-a-year wage they had sought.

In the report issued by Toronto lawyer Thomas McIver, who chaired an arbitration hearing in September, the pay for a first-class firefighter rises to […]