Trinity County Volunteer Fire Department destroyed by fire

Source: Gina Baker, 356 VFD
Source: Gina Baker, 356 VFD

TRINITY COUNTY, TX (KTRE) - A Trinity County volunteer fire department was destroyed by fire early Sunday morning.

"It's gone, but we'll rebuild," said Jerry Caldwell, volunteer first responder with the 356 Volunteer Fire Department.

The fire was called in by a passerby just after midnight. The fire chief and his wife got a call from the sheriff's office just after 12:30 A.M. Sunday morning.

"Se told me that our fire station was on fire," said Regina Baker.

Onalaska and Trinity Fire Departments responded to the blaze.  Witnesses say the building on F.M. 356 was already engulfed by flames when fire-fighters arrived.

Fire Chief Jesse Baker said it felt like forever before they got there.

"It was heartbreaking to sit there and watch your fire station burn, and you can't do anything because you don't have water to put on it.  There's no way to do anything to stop it," said Baker.

V.F.D. members say it took almost three hours to extinguish the fire. The chief says everything was destroyed with losses estimated around $400,000.

"We lost 2 brush trucks, a rescue truck and a tanker truck," said Baker.

Rebuilding won't be as easy as giving the insurance company a call since the fire chief says they don't have any.  They'll be starting completely over.

"We're just going to have to count on our public to help and county on any help that we can get, anywhere we can get it," said Baker.

The fire chief says this fire is a true testament to how critical the fire danger is here in East Texas.

If you are interested in helping out the 356 Volunteer Fire Department you can email Regina Baker at or call 936-662-2985.

The fire marshal is supposed to investigate the scene tomorrow morning to determine a cause for the fire.

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