Windsor awards years of service at VFD annual meeting

Recognized for their years of service to the Windsor Volunteer Fire Department at their annual meeting on April 11 were, from left to right, Carroll York, 70 years, Arthur Strout, 60 years, Dennis Strout, 40 years. Not pictured Jon Mittleman, five years. (Photo by Eric Austin)

by Eric W. Austin

Nearly 40 people gathered at Aunt Gin’s restaurant, in Whitefield, for the Windsor Volunteer Fire Department’s annual meeting on Thursday, April 11. The highlight of the evening was the presentation of distinguished service awards to four individuals who have contributed significantly to the Windsor VFD over the years.

Jon Mittelman, who was on vacation and unable to attend the meeting, was honored for five years of service.

Dennis Strout was honored for 40 years of service with the Windsor Volunteer Fire Department.

Arthur Strout, the current fire chief for Windsor, was honored for 60 years of service.

Carrol York, a former fire chief, former fire warden and founding member of Windsor VFD, was honored for 70 years with the department.

The audience listens as assistant chief Mike Dostie tells an amusing story of attending his first fire with former chief Carrol York. (Photo by Eric Austin)

Theresa Haskell, town manager for Windsor, also expressed her appreciation for the work of the VFD. “I want to thank the fire department for everything that you do for the town of Windsor,” she said. “You guys put a lot of time, hours, efforts – everything that you do – and don’t truly get appreciated as much as you should. So, I want to definitely thank you as the town manager. Thank you for your dedicated service to the town. I love the camaraderie that we have with each other, so that’s wonderful. It’s good to see that. I appreciate everything!”

After the ceremony, Carrol York spoke with me about his many years with the Windsor Fire Department. York, who turned 94 years old this month, served in the U.S. Air Force during World War II as a tail gunner on a B-17 bomber. He flew 27 missions and was shot down three times. “I come home from the service, Christmas 1945,” he tells me, “and then in ‘46 we started trying to get a truck together, with a tank on it and everything.”

Since then, Windsor Fire and Rescue has grown to 21 active members of the fire department, five members of the rescue team, and has become an essential part of the community. They maintain a station with seven trucks: two fire engines, two tanker trucks, a forestry brush truck, a utility truck, and a basic life support vehicle used by the Windsor Rescue team. The department responds to an average of 80 fire calls and 250 medical calls each year.

Windsor VFD holds monthly business meetings on the third Tuesday, and training sessions every second and fourth Thursday of the month. They are always looking for volunteers, and anyone interested should contact them at or 445-2611.


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