History of The Argyle Fire District
The Argyle Fire District began operations in the summer of 1979 when several concerned citizens of the Argyle, Florida community began to discuss the urgent need for fire protection in the local area. Initially composed of Thad Wallace, A.J. Touchton, Carl Day, Oliver Scott, Allison Day, Kenneth Gillis, Casey Hawkins, Bill Adkison, Charlie Day, Bob Cole, David Chandler, Columbus Gillis, and others to seek ways to get the Volunteer Fire Department organized and operational. Some of them were military veterans from the US Navy, Air Force, and Army with extensive firefighting experience and skills. They had accumulated firefighting equipment and firefighting manuals, which they used to begin the early training of the first firefighters and first responders for the Argyle Volunteer Fire Department.
It was not until 1981 that the Walton County Board of Commissioners and The State of Florida officially established the Argyle Volunteer Fire Department with their Articles of Incorporation. This also established the current geographical boundaries of the Argyle Fire District.
In the beginning, there was no money supplied from Walton County or the State of Florida to the Argyle Volunteer Fire Department, and It operated solely on funds received from bake sales, chili suppers, prize drawings, and donations for many years, slowly growing in members and equipment, and increasing their capabilities.
In 1984, the members of the Department decided to ask the citizens within the Argyle Fire District to support a referendum that would establish an annual non-ad valorem special assessment of $25 per dwelling to help with a stable funding source for the Argyle Fire District. The referendum would also establish the “Argyle Fire District,” which would be managed by an elected five member Board of Commissioners. The referendum passed with a very good majority, and the Board of Commissioners was elected at the same time.
The first commissioners were Ron Pugh, Tommy Yates, John Day, Bob Cole, and Bill Adkison. With a steady and predictable source of income, the Argyle Volunteer Fire Department was able to upgrade vehicles and equipment, enabling the District to provide better fire protection, suppression, and rescue operations and to improve and expand the training and education of our members.
Later, in 2006, the District Board of Commissioners looked at other Fire Districts in the State of Florida to see how services and funding
could maybe be improved for the betterment of the citizens. The local Florida Legislative Committee developed House Bill 1413
Then, it was brought before the Florida Legislature to create the “Argyle Fire District.”It passed as Florida Statute 2006-354 with the Governor’s signature.
From its beginning, the Argyle Fire District established a reputation of High-Level firefighting skills, quick response, and excellence in
training Regimens. This was due to the dedicated efforts of all members, but especially the hard work, dedication, and commitment of the Department’s Chiefs: Carl Day, L.C. Griggs, Charlie Day (who served for over 24 years as Chief), and the current Chief, Jonathan Day.
Today, the Argyle Fire District has a fleet of Class “A” Pumpers, Quick Assault Units, Heavy Rescue Trucks, Tankers, Brush Units
And Support Vehicles. Also, Argyle Fire Department has two state-certified fire instructors and an average of 26 members (of which 12 hold Firefighter One Certification from the State of Florida) with three stations within 95 square miles.