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THERE WERE FIRES EVERYWHERE, SATURDAY, APRIL 20, 1963, by Joseph B. Ross Jr.  (Copyright © 2022 by Joseph B. Ross Jr.) CHAPTER 1 - Friendship Airport   Scoutmaster Raymond Robley scanned the area from elevated ground located on wooded Friendship Airport property about one-half-mile north of Dorsey Road. Directly in front of him approximately 40 to 50 boy scouts of Troop 822, sponsored by the Linthicum Methodist Church, were setting up two-person army surplus pup tents along a 15 feet wide sandy soil fire break. As the 11 to 15- year-old scouts struggled to set up their tents in a...

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THERE WERE FIRES EVERYWHERE, SATURDAY, APRIL 20, 1963, by Joseph B. Ross Jr.  (Copyright © 2022 by Joseph B. Ross Jr.) CHAPTER 2 -  Clay Banks, Elkridge and Brockbridge Road  Fire Chief Clyde Willis, Glen Burnie VFD, Company 33, responded to the Clay Banks fire in his chief’s car. Willis was also employed as an Anne Arundel County (AACo.) engineman, assigned to Company 33 to drive and operate the fire apparatus. But on his days off he was the chief of the busiest fire department in the county and on this Saturday he would assist  wherever he could. Willis’s chief’s...

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THERE WERE FIRES EVERYWHERE, SATURDAY, APRIL 20, 1963, by Joseph B. Ross Jr.  (Copyright © 2022 by Joseph B. Ross Jr.) Chapter 3 - The Big Gambrills – Arden on the Severn Fire  Earlier, at the small one-story two-bay fire station, on Hall Road in the community of Herald Harbor, in Crownsville, Charlie Wilson relieved Robert “Bobby” Darr from duty around 8 a.m.  Wilson and Darr were Anne Arundel County (AACo.) enginemen and volunteers with the Herald Harbor VFD, Company 6, and worked a shift of 24 hours on and 48 hours off duty.  (Herald Harbor VFD Station 6, Circa...

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THERE WERE FIRES EVERYWHERE, SATURDAY, APRIL 20, 1963, by Joseph B. Ross Jr.  (Copyright © 2022 by Joseph B. Ross Jr.) Chapter 4 - We Got All We Can Handle Here   Back in the individual fire stations in north and west Anne Arundel County, radio operators were calling for as much apparatus as they could get. There were other fires burning.   Anne Arundel County and Annapolis City stations that still had engines and brush apparatus available sent everything west. Enginemen driving the fire apparatus headed towards the large columns of smoke. Additional calls were now going out to...

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THERE WERE FIRES EVERYWHERE, SATURDAY, APRIL 20, 1963, by Joseph B. Ross Jr.  (Copyright © 2022 by Joseph B. Ross Jr.) Chapter 5 - The Fire Jumped Route 3 Prior to 1962, US Route 301/Maryland Route 3/Crain Highway was a single two-lane roadway that connected with New Cut Road in South Glen Burnie and continued south to Bowie in Prince Georges County. There had been brush fires in the past that started on the west side of the road and had jumped to the east side. Now with a newly constructed separate two-lane roadway that was converted to the southbound...

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