Taipei Volunteer Fire Department

The Taipei Volunteer Fire Department (TVFD) was formed in 1954.

1954 – 2019

Burning Bright  for Over 65 Years

Burning Bright since 1954
In 2019 the TVFD celebrated it’s 65th Year!!

Welcome all Friends and Firemen of the TVFD,

On June 14, 1954 a group of twelve men got together at the New Formosa Restaurant just off Yen Ping North Road in Taipei for a farewell party for a departing British Sailor who had been stationed with the British Consulate in Taiwan. During that party, those twelve men gave birth to an idea to form a permanent male social group and to get together once a month for dinner and a few drinks. The first Friday of every month was selected as an appropriate date and that monthly meeting date has prevailed ever since.

The name, Taipei Volunteer Fire Department (T.V.F.D.) was unanimously adopted as the official name of the group and a T-Shirt with the name emblazoned thereon would be the official uniform. The first officers were selected and appointed by unanimous acclaim and the T.V.F.D. became a reality and all members became Firemen.

Initially, there were no plans for any expansion of the membership, but during the first year some of the original twelve members had departed and it was realized that in order to survive it would be necessary to take in additional members on a very selective basis. Prospective members had to be proposed by a Firemen and accepted by the membership. Nominees who were accepted became SLOBS and for at least two months, were closely observed by the Firemen and then given an initiation ritual to determine their suitability to become a Firemen. From the beginning it was decided to limit Active Membership in the T.V.F.D. to twenty-five.

 For the first few years the T.V.F.D. met regularly at various restaurants or members homes. In 1957 a good Chinese friend to most Firemen, ” Papa Ming “, provided a large room over his restaurant and bar in downtown Taipei as a regular meeting place for the monthly T.V.F.D. business meetings. That place became the International Headquarters of the Taipei Volunteer Fire Department and continued as such until the death of Papa Ming. In recent years the T.V.F.D. has held their meetings in various places including the F.R.A., the V.F.W. and the American Legion (Post Home). Since sometime in 2000, the Country Pub, located in Tien Mu and owned by our oldest active fireman Jack Wang (the son of Papa Ming), has become the TVFD headquarters where fires are held monthly and an entire wall is is dedicated to the display of TVFD memorabilia.

For the first couple of years the T.V.F.D. met on the first Friday of each month to conduct business, enjoy a gourmet repast, conduct initiations and socialize. An additional Scheduled Fire was called from time to time to honor departing Firemen. In 1956, it was decided to hold a Scheduled Fire on the third Saturday of each month where Firemen could bring their wives, girlfriends and other guests, particularly friends who might be considered as candidates for membership.

From the beginning the Firemen realized they must have a Fire Bell to conduct “Official Fires”. For the first few years Civil Air Transport (C.A.T.) arranged to fly the official Base Fire Bell from Tainan Air Station to Taipei for temporary use by the T.V.F.D. Finally, the late President Magsaysay of the Philippines, after having visited Taiwan and learning of the plight of the T.V.F.D., returned to the Philippines and obtained and sent to the T.V.F.D. a bell which had been salvaged from a U.S. Navy ship which was sunk off the Philippine coast during World War II. This bell has since been the ” Official Fire Bell ” of the T.V.F.D. On this bell are engraved the names of almost 300 Firemen who have been members of the T.V.F.D. since its inception.

Over the years the International Headquarters in Taipei have chartered various branches in the United States and several foreign countries.


Although never claiming any charitable goals, the T.V.F.D. has, on a number of occasions, rendered selective assistance to orphanages, needy individuals and other charitable causes. For the past few years, the TVFD has raised money for St. Anna’s Home, a local orphanage in Tien Mu, through the Piglet Poo (formerly known as the Chicken Shit). In the late 60’s two officers of the T.V.F.D. appeared on a local television program to make a cash contribution to the widow and children of a Chinese Firemen killed in a Taipei fire.

In 2019, the T.V.F.D. celebrates its 65th year. The organization has been holding monthly Scheduled Fires almost without exception during that time. The sucessful existence and the longevity of the T.V.F.D. is attributed to two factors~
(1) The sole purpose of its existence, is for the social enjoyment and friendship of its members and their families; and
(2) its’ membership is restricted to a relatively small number and new members are selected on the basis of their social compatibility and desire to contribute to the goal of social enjoyment and friendship of the T.V.F.D.

Names on the Bell

Over the years ### Firemen have stamped there names onto the TVFD Bell, members for life.

Here are the names off the first original Bell. It has now officially been retired, but can still be seen at TVFD international Headquarters. (NB at present it can be seen at Neihu ,Fire and Saftey Museum)

 Tom Dewolf, Gene Kulesa, Dave Martin, John Schmitt, Doug Smith, Dick Stewart, Ed Stites, *Stan Zaucha, Jack Tsuo(H), Rudy Arevalo(H), Doc Herr(H), Paul Smith, Dick Czoski, Dave Brazell, Ski Wisauski, Jack Meyers, Bill Reilly, Jim Colvin, Larry Allen(H), Rudy Diaz, Boyington, Bob Cross, Lindy Koga, Fed Schwecke,

Andy Maxson, Dave Cerih, Bill Ponder, Bud Walsh, Jack Baily, Ed Sheridan, Russ Sexton, Fred Butler, tom Mackesy, Ted Flentke, George Rule, Walt Dudek, Soapy Smith, Mickey Bews, Ned Metcalf, Bob Samborn, *Lee Mueller, Paul J. Kelly, George Reid, TP McCorkle, Huey Mclain, Bill Surles, *Frank Smith, Frank Nesci, Glen Troxel, Sam Samuel, Jack Wu(H), Fred Meyer,

Norman Good, Lynn Reynolds, Bus Edwardds, *Gene Parker, Bill Woolworth, *Doc Johnson, J.B. Williams, Roy Stewart, Dan Drake, Bill Reed, Fred Cunningham, W.F. Pittman, Jim johns, Willie Williamson, Connie Siegrist, John jones, Jerry Beckham, Stan Fleehary, Ken Hering, *Don Webster, *Charlie Weltz, Dick Peret, Gil Maxwell, Bob Martin, Keith Kahl,

Skip Bennet, Michael Halowski, Jim Kenney, Jerry Lugar, *Norm Michael, George O’Keefe, Tom Pearce, *Hank Rose, taco Perez, R.T. Jacobs, Larry Hasty, Ron Simon, Rey Jones, Virg Rogers, Stan Deckard, *Jerry Prinz, S. Colarusso, Bill McGrathm Boyd Green, Al Fortuna, O. Montgomery, *Dave Kunberger, Wes Thommesen, Roger Teoford, Duane Bechthold

Don Phillips, George P. Smith, Dave William, *Skip Kopp, *Jim Miller, Hank Allain, Bruce Franklin, *Tony Yanker, Ed Riggie, *J. Hetterscheidt, Paul O’Dowd, Paul Edwards, L.W. Smith, Lee Jacobs, Tony Downing, *Ray Simmons, Jim Schlottman, Wayne Lynch, Greg Strattan, Jack Ruehlman, Ken Chappell,

Tim Riggie, *Jim Fredrick, *Jim Williams, Rod Quick, *Bill Mentz, Bird Kauffman, *Ray Steele, Tony Adams, Dick Montgomery, Harry Myers, *Jim Haight, *Earl Hamilton, Lowell Barton, Tim Forest, Jack Haber, Chick Palmer, Kevin Strebel, Steve Lynch, Ray Green, John Lane, Charlie Flynn, Doug Brown, (E SIRVINE)?,

Jim Sartor, *Scotty Bloomer, Ward Baugher(H), Jack Polnoroff, Gene Peebles, Walter Boone, Henry Diebel, Tom Balchalk, Bill Corkins, Charlie Pfaff, Bill Hargrave, Frank Kirkwood, Mousey Johnson, Paul Bannister, Gene Filipelli, Hank Preeston, Mike O Farrell, Harry O Connell, Santos Vicens, Jack McGinness, *John Matcheti, *Dick Coleman, Gene Dugan, John Dunn, Al Ruiz, John Hughes, *Dale Holmoren, J.J. Johnson,

John O’Brien, Paul Blessing, Carroll O’Brien, Henry Brown, *Sam Alima(?), Paul Reud, R.A. Bahr, Jack Tait, Bob Guinn, *B.J. Fisher, Jim Manin, JJ. Horton, J. Gudis, Bob Maxey, Joe hish, *Ben Zito, J. Beckham, R.J. Rock, *Fred Wyant, H. Beecham, L.J. Tuggle, R.e Whitney, Ming Kok, Jim Meekin, Flip Canody, Jim Knight, Bill Reilly, (LIAM?) Revell, Paul O’Dowd

*Bill Bennett, Ed Burns, John Javronsky, Bill Holcromb, Walt Gunther, Ed Turney, Ray Stamp, Bill English, *Hank Brown, *Russ Colvin, L. Brau, Bob Moore, Don Blakely, Mac McCollum, George Winsett, Bill Painter, Scarborough, Roy Laney, Bill Trawick, Bob Luttrell, Bill Kelly, Harold Roland, Bob Bosley, H. Brown(H), Jim Holland(H), Ray Lovering, Bill Rovan,

Buzz Piechota, *Don Cade, Don Hinson, Bill Hummel, Clyde Slaughter, Al Salinas, Don Hammond, *Bill Krueger, Jim Richmond, Keith Jarms, Ken Chappell, Dennis Price, *Don Soules, Mel Meyler, John Warde, Felix Gonzalez, Rich knight,

Dick Cook, Bill Dings, *Frank Valley, *(Dave?) Goff, *(Dud?) Stansfield, (Bud?) Barber, Otto Franz, Jim Simmons, Ron Jenkins, (James Nelson?), Ed (Harmun?), Jack Conan, Jamie Silver Stein, Bill Ellis, Bob Cordero, Ken Pintar, Raymond Fish,

Mike Summers, Mike Kelly, Gareth Lewis, Mitchell Helm, Jim le Compte, Sam Wilson, David Van Winkle, Randy Tackaberry, Stan Firme, Rober Power, Charles Persson, Daniel Weber, Chck Wade, *Bob Faydash, Naboo Wu, Jon Rittger, Rick Williams, Azul Doong, *Mike Albert, Jim (Buhller?), Joe Gionfrido, Stephem J. Howlett, Jan Van Der Ree, Ruben Gines, Tony Holland, Bob Hartlep, B.J. Baumgartner, *Pete Radzihowski, Ed Fleischer, John Vaughan, Kurt Applegate, *Tony Taylor, Kevin O’Leary,