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How The St. Albans City Firetruck Got Its Name

Written and Illustrated by 3rd and 4th grade students at St. Albans City School

Copyright 2011 In the spring of 2011, the City of St. Albans asked the St. Albans City School students to write a story to help them name the new St. Albans City Fire Truck. The school was so excited to have this opportunity, and held a writing and drawing contest for all students in 3rd and 4th grade. From this group 19 authors and illustrators were selected. The authors worked for weeks getting their stories from a first draft to a final draft. The illustrators each paired with an author and illustrated the author’s story.

When they were ready, the stories were delivered to the City Police/Fire Chief, Gary Taylor, who facilitated the selection process for the firetruck's new name. On Monday June 13, 2010, each of the stories was read aloud to a group of students. After two readings of each story, everyone gathered at the front of the school. The St. Albans City School Senior Band played, as we prepared for a big announcement by the St. Albans City Fire Department. Based on the stories submitted - the firetruck's new name is

"Big Red"

Big Red

Author: Hailey Illustrator: Noah

One day in a far away land there lived a rooster who was plump and short. He was bored one day and he decided to take a walk. He walked to the park and to a store, but then right out of the middle of nowhere, right in front of him, a magic wishing well popped out. It read "Make three wishes and the one you want most to come true will." His first wish was "I want to have friends."

Did I tell you he had no friends? Well he didn't. He hated it. Wish number two was to be skinny. Remember he was plump. Wish number three, I want to help. Then he closed his eyes and thought. He thought he knew which one would come true, but no. That one would not come true. No. Something happened that night. Something very bizarre happened........

That night the rooster's feathers turned into metal. He grew tremendously. He turned red, and broke his bedroom wall so he was sleeping outside. He had no idea this was happening.Then he grew a ladder, sprouted a hose, grew gauges and a steering wheel. He was a fire truck, the biggest one you ever saw! The next day he drove down to the fire station. They named him Big Red because of his size. His wish did come true. He helped a lot of people every day. It was amazing, wonderful, fantastic, and awesome.

Big Red Strikes!

Author: Ethan Illustrator: Dylan

Since the dawn of firetrucks, there have been many fine firetrucks, such as: Lightning, the firetruck that put out a fire in a house that was burning from a strike of lightning in 18 minutes. Or Speedy Gonzales, the firetruck that has a 4 foot engine. Or even WaterBomb, the firetruck that shoots water at 50 mph! But move over Lightning, Speedy Gonzales, and WaterBomb... It's been leading up to this firetruck...

....Big Red! This firetruck looks like a normal firetruck on the outside! This firetruck has a 2 foot long engine, blasts water at 51 mph, and is the best ...One....YET! This firetruck has put out 6 fires in the past month! It has rescued 27 people, and has room for 7 people inside it! This also has a heroic story! Nick was a boy who never had a best friend. He was sitting on the curb and all of a sudden aliens abducted him! Then, Big Red was doing a stroll around town and saw that aliens were abducting Nick! The firetruck came along and shot the UFO with water until it fell! The UFO fell and caused a loud BANG!

After that, Nick has been a regular at the fire station by visiting daily, and the firetruck was his first best friend! Then Nick became a fireman 20 years later using Big Red! Then he lived happily ever after. Talking about Speedy Gonzales, WaterBomb, and Lightning reminds me that they make Team Fast Aqua Lightning. Big Red is a part of it now! And so, that's how it got its name!

Big Red

Author: Bethany Illustrator: Joe

One day there was a new firetruck coming to town! The firetruck did not have a name. Then people just started to yell out names to see if the firetruck liked the names. But he said no to every one of the names. The next day all of the children went to school thinking about a name for the firetruck.

When they got to school, a little girl named Violet said, "Let's name the fire truck Red Max!" Everyone said no. After lunch Alex said, "Let's name the firetruck Tools!" But only some people liked that name and some didn't. So they went home still thinking about a name for the firetruck. When they went back to school, everyone got a partner and wrote down a name for the truck.

Violet and Alex were partners and they wanted the name to be Spark. Ellie and Joe said it should be Dark Red. Lyndsey, Isey, Ella and Brianna all thought it should be Big Red. When all of them said that it should be Big Red, everyone said yes! They wrote a note to the chief fireman and he said that it was a great name and the firetruck agreed.

Other Great Names the St. Albans Firetruck Almost Received

Fire Fiero Clifford Blazer Dave's Handy Helper Fire Away Mac Mystery

Perfect Red Red Maple Scuffy's Adventure Scuffy Secretariat The Day It Thundered The Extreme Vehicle The Great Rescue


Author: Evan Illustrator: Dylan

Wee yoo wee yoo fire!! The siren was roaring loudly! All the firemen got dressed and got to the job. They were going to Colony Square because there was a big big fire.

In apartment 5 they went in the room and found a boy named Evan wimpering. They rescued him by picking him up and bringing him outside. Then the brave fireman named Joe put out the fire. Then they returned Evan to his parents.

"Thank you so much," they said and they were so happy. Since they didn't name the firetruck yet, Joe the fireman thought they should name the firetruck Evan, since that's the boy's name that they saved. "That's a good idea," said Tom the fireman. "Lets name it that." That's how the firetruck got its name.


Author: Olivia Illustrator: Anna

"Hey we should get this kitten!" I said. "What should we name him?" Asked my mom. "Hmm... what about Fieroi!" "Fieroi?" Asked my mother. "Yah Fieroi! He looks like a fire!" I persisted. "I like the name Fieroi," said my mother. So we bought Fieroi and headed home. "Hey, Fieroi, do you want to go and look at the new fire truck?," I asked Fieroi as I padded down the stairs following him. "Meow!" Said Fieroi. "Do you want your food?," I asked him as usual, as this was our daily routine. "Meow!" Fieroi meowed after I had mentioned his food. "Okay Fiero, calm down." I soothed him.

"Uhh..." I yawned as Fieroi jumped on my bed and woke me up. "Meow!" He meowed and ran down the stairs. "Fieroi!" I called and followed him. He usually waited for me. Instead of heading to the kitchen which he usually does after waking me up, he headed toward the glass door where you could see Mrs.Charlotte's house. "Meow!" he screeched again and I got him his food and went back upstairs.

"Fieroi!" I called him again. He didn't budge. I thought and thought then it hit me. The most obvious thing ever... Fieroi loved treats! I ran over to the place where we keep all the things that are his, and pulled out a bag of his favorite kind of treats. "Fieroi," I taunted him in a sweet voice and he still wouldn't move. "Fieroi," I said a little more sharply. Nothing.

"Fieroi!" I whispered really loudly and shook the bag of treats. Finally, he ran over to me. He was acting normal again. "Meow! Meow!" He meowed again and walked back over to the door to resume pawing at the glass. "Meow! Meow! Meow!" He screeched pawing and meowing as loud as he could finally, sick of all the noise, I walked over to the window to see what he was meowing at. Then as I got closer I smelled smoke. There was a fire somewhere! As I peered at the neighbor's house I was shocked! I ran up to my mom and dad's room and screamed. "Mommy! Daddy! Half of the neighbor's house is on fire! Call the fire department!" "Kari go back to bed..." My mom lazily said I stared at her in disbelief she was sleeping and didn't care what I had said!

"Mom!" "Honey, it's so early. What are you blabbering about?" My mom asked me. "Mrs.Charlotte's house is on fire! Fieroi woke me up and showed me!" My mom looked at me in disbelief. I didn't care what she thought anymore. I picked up the phone and dialed 911. "Kari, you're only supposed to dial 911 in a true emergency," my mom screamed at me. "It is one!" I told her. "Hello this is an operator of 911. What is your emergency?" a person asked me. I told them what happened and what street I lived on and sure enough in a matter of seconds we heard sirens and saw the new firetruck!

Luckily, Mrs. Charlotte and her husband got out unscathed. But their daughter Shana wasn't so lucky. Sadly, she died, but the fireman told us we saved Mrs. Charlotte and Travis, her husband. If it wasn't for Fieroi all of them would have died. "Hey little girl. How did you know there was a fire at two o'clock in the morning?" one of the firemen asked me. "I didn't. Fieroi did." I told him. "Hey Fieroi! That's not a bad name for the new fire truck," one of the firemen suggested. "Would you like it if we named the fire truck after your little cat?" one of the firemen asked me. I nodded my head yes and that's how the firetruck got its name

Clifford the Big Red Fire Truck

Author: Cooper Illustrator: Victoria

The St. Albans Fire department got a new firetruck, and it needed a name. All the other trucks were laughing and pointing at him because he's never been to a fire. One day there were three firetrucks that had gone by. The new truck hadn't gone to any of them. When one of the trucks got back he said, "Boy was that fun!"

The same truck that said, "Boy was that fun" went over to the new truck and said, "So how many fires have you been to today? Oh yeah ZERO!" But one day the new truck was feeling great, and then they got a call for a fire. It was the biggest fire of the year, and for some reason the new truck got called in.

He was very excited to go, but it took longer then he thought. All the other trucks thought he was a goner, but he came back. Th one of the trucks said, "Good job Clifford!" So the new trucks name was Clifford. That's how the St. Albans firetruck got its name.


Author: Mason Illustrator: Forest

One day some firemen got a call about a forest fire, so they got in their new fire truck named Blazer, and also his best friend named Crusher. When they got there all the news people, cops, ambulance and firemen were already there. They tried putting out the fire but the roaring blaze got bigger. Then a flaming tree fell on the second fire truck and it was covered with fire and it was blazing hot!

The fire started to get to the firemen and blazer blasted water out of his hose and put out the blaze on the truck and the men grabbed the jaws of life off the truck and got the fire men out. Then they called in for backup.

Helicopters and airplanes came. When they were over the fire they dropped this special fluid on the fire but it only put out half the fire. So they drove down to the other half and put out the rest of the blaze and forever the amazing, blazing fire truck will be called Blazer!

Dave's Handy Helper

Author & Illustrator Kayleigh

One day fireman Dave was in a bad situation. He had to put out a fire at the edge of a cliff!! He was at the back of the house, then...... SNAP!! He fell back and was heading for a five hundred foot drop. He made it very safely down. So he was OK. Dave was there a couple of weeks but he had enough food to survive for a month. He had to sleep in between boulders and drink from small cracks in the rocks. If it rained Dave would be very lucky. But one day a fire truck came zooming towards him!! Nobody was driving it!! The truck had lots of food and water but then the ladder lifted and Dave said... this truck does not have a name so I'll call it DAVE'S HANDY HELPER!!!

The firetruck's lights were beaming with light. Dave thought the firetruck was happy so he climbed the ladder and found that he was thirsty. He soon found a crack. He saw silvery water, so he drank it. The next day he felt very strong! He was getting much stronger and faster so it took Dave only three days to get to the top of the cliff again. But in those three days he brought some of the silvery water and he was pouring it on the truck and soon he and the fire truck got to the top!! It was amazing that he was safe.

He was very happy that the truck had saved him. The next day he found his friends. And he just knew that his friends were searching for him and he called, "HEY YOU GUYS!!" They all looked clueless and worried. But then they saw Dave who was very sick and gratefully limped over to the guys who noticed his bleeding ankle. He helped Dave and then they saw the firetruck and said DAVE'S HANDY HELPER! And then they threw a WELCOME BACK DAVE!! And that's how the firetruck got it's name!!


Fire Away

Author: Justin Illustrator: Thomas

One day the St Albans fire department got a new firetruck! It was shiny, flashy, and the best part is it had cup holders. "Yes," said one of the firemen. "I always have trouble spilling my drink." Later that day the firemen were eating lunch. The chief's radio mentioned that there was a fire at Mimmo's Pizza Parlor on Main Street. They set their lunch down and ran to the new firetruck. The only problem with the new firetruck is that it did not have a name.

But the firemen did not care, they just wanted to see how it worked. When they got to Mimmo's they hooked up the hose and walked into the place. When they walked into the kitchen they looked at the stove, and it was roaring in flames.

They sprayed it with a hose for about 30 seconds and it was out. The EMT's came to make sure no one was hurt and, luckily, no one was. After the fire they got to the fire station and decided to name it "Fire Away". The next day they engraved on the ladder "Fire Away" and that is how the St. Albans firetruck got its name.


Author: Maia Illustrator: Kiarah

There was once a man and he was a firefighter. He was the head firefighter and his name was Clay. He loved his job! When he put out fires he would make sure that EVERYONE was safe. He had a best friend and his name was John. He worked at the fire department too! One day John and Clay were talking and they got a phone call. It said that they are making a new firetruck and it's coming soon!

That's all John and Clay were talking about! The next day they got a fire call! There was a fire! They got in their firetrucks and ZOOMED to the house where there was a massive fire. They got there stuff and got all the people out. Except one! He had to go back into the house and he looked and LOOKED! Finally he found the guy and he was hurt real bad! They brought him to the hospital and the doctors said he almost died! But thankfully he was alive. He was one lucky man.

A couple days later the firetruck came! It was awesome! Clay said, "What are we going to name it? Wait! What about the survivor of the fire. What was his name? Ohh it was Mac!" It turns out that was the firetruck's name -- Mac!


Author: Emily Illustrator: Rosie

"Come on old Mystery. We got another visitor on our hands." He patted the bright red firetruck. "She would like to know how you got your name." Let me begin.... Once upon a time there was a boy named Tom. Now, he adored firetrucks. He wanted to be a firefighter when he got older. That's when tragedy hit. All he saw was smoke. His mind raced with questions and he was hungry for answers. Where was baby Elizabeth? Will I die? What will happen? How did this happen? At least he knew one answer. He would not die. He would not let that happen. Wildly, he searched for an exit. The vent! It was open! He ran as fast as he could. His lungs stung. His face was covered in tears. His body was thrashing at the hot ashes as they made a touchdown on his skin.

In pieces, but determined to cling onto his hanging life, he flung his limp body into the vent. He crawled on his hands and knees, and finally, after what felt like forever, he burst through the other side of the vent. He had done it! But it wasn't over yet. The fire was flaming outward. He clumsily reached for his cell phone, shaking. He called 911. "Oh," he mumbled, "baby Elizabeth was out of the house, she was with grandma. At least she was safe." After that, he wanted to volunteer at the fire station. When he got older, he got more involved. Then one nice afternoon the fire chief said, "Tom, I will let you have the new firetruck, and you have the pleasure to name it." He fell to his knees.

"Tom, this firetruck is odd, no one knows where it came from. We found it, and decided to adopt it. Its yours now." He pulled it into the station. "I think I will name it Mystery," said Tom. "No one knows how the fire I was in started. And it doesn't have a name, its a mystery. Anyway, this one looks like the one that saved me." So he and Mystery lived happily ever after. "Sir, said the woman, "that was a great story but I would like to meet Tom." "Ma'am", my name is Tom, and this truck is Mystery. That story is my life. I was in the fire. That was me." The End

Perfect Red

Author: Uriah Illustrator: Angel

Once there was a firetruck and the firetruck went to every fire to help, but the other firetrucks said that they didn't need his help. One day there was a huge fire and the mean firetrucks asked the new firetruck to help and he said no. The mean firetruck kept begging the new firetruck. The new firetruck said "whatever," so he helped them and put out the fire.

The town was so happy that the mean firetrucks stopped being mean and teamed up with the new firetruck and they never had that problem again! The name should be Perfect Red!

Red Maple

Author: Alyssa Illustrator: Kerry

One day a girl named Toni had surgery on her finger and her dad was a firefighter in Franklin. Toni's dad saw that she was sad because she had to stay home from school for a week and he said,'' Toni, guess what? The fire department is getting a new firetruck and they want you to name it because they knew you were sad.'' "That's nice, I would like to name it Red Maple." said Toni, still a little bit sad.

Toni wanted to call it Red Maple because the firetruck was red and Vermont makes a lot of delicious maple syrup. She wrote about why she wanted to name the firetruck Red Maple and went to the fire department the next day with her dad and gave them the story. They read it and a few days later the name Red Maple was carved into the fire truck. The firetruck was in the Easter parade and Toni got to ride in the firetruck with her dad and whenever she was around town and the firetruck went by she would say, "I named that firetruck!" That's the story on how the fire truck got it's name.

Scuffy's Adventure

Author: Joe Illustrator: Elias

Scuffy was a rusty firetruck. Dust came out of him when he tried to run. Then one day the God of Coolness came and said, "I will make you cool because all the other firetrucks are already cool." Then he said some magic words. No longer than a hour later when the Cool God and the firetruck were playing chess, a bolt of lighting came down and stuck the firetruck and he was awesome, I mean cool. Then, after that, the Cool God left. Scuffy was driving around the junk yard for a long time.

A day after the garbage man came and saw the COOL fire truck and took it. Than he used it as his personal garbage truck. Well you know that no truck wants to be a garbage truck. So Scuffy did not like that. Scuffy was getting scuffed from when the garbage man was hitting him because he was not being a good garbage truck.

But one day a police man saw the garbage man and said "Do you have a drivers license?." "No" said the garbage man. "Then I will have to take this firetruck," said the police man and then he took him to the fire station. The fireman named Tom said "thanks." He cleaned the fire truck, but he noticed the scuff on the side and said, "Hey boss, lets name the fire truck Scuffy". The end.


Author: Derek Illustrated: Derek

One day a firetruck sat in the dump thinking how to get out. It took days and days of thinking and "pop!" he thought of an idea! He needed wheels. So he scuffed to one then the other, then eventually he got the wheels and went down off the hill of garbage and got out of that stinky place. He wanted to go back to the fire department but he didn't know where it was so he decided to travel. One day he saw the FIRE! But he was the only one who saw the fiery red flames, so he zoomed to the fire. He went past the bakery, flew across the hospital and past the museum and there it was! He pulled his hose and washed the water out.

He went in the building and got the lady and the cat out of the house and the old lady coughed. The cat's tail was burned off. He quickly brought the old lady and the cat to the hospital. When she woke up, the firetruck was smiling in her face. The old lady was like "Where am I?" The person in the hospital said "You're in the hospital." "Oh" said the old lady. "Why is there a fire truck in here smiling in my face?" The person in the hospital said "This fire truck saved your life." "Oh. I'm going to call you um... Scuffy!" When they got outside the old lady bought a leash. The old lady put it on the cat and took a walk back home. The cat loved the firetruck. The old lady said "It's called Freddy what?! The cat's called Freddy." "Oh cool name, thanks," and that's how they became friends. The End.


Author: Isabelle Illustrator: Jeremy

One day I was watching a movie called Secretariat and I thought that the name of the firetruck could be Secretariat because firetrucks are fast! And horses are fast. So that's why I thought Secretariat would be a good name for a firetruck. And horses can carry a lot of stuff on their backs. And firetrucks can carry a lot of things in it and on top of it.

That's how I got the name Secretariat for the firetruck. I also thought that Secretariat was a good name because there are chestnut horses that are red, and firetrucks are red and Secretariat was a chestnut horse. That's why Secretariat is a good name for the firetruck. THE END!

The Day It Thundered

Author: Shylese Illustrator: Masie

One day I walked down the street in St. Albans, Vermont and I walked near a fire station. As I passed the station, I saw a brand new firetruck. As I began getting closer to the truck, it started thundering out so I ran and took shelter next to it.

It was raining so hard that I was afraid to leave the truck's side. That's when I said, "Hmm... since I'm standing here next to this brand new awesome firetruck, I should be the one to name it!" This is when I looked up at the sky and thought to myself that I should name it Thunder because of the storm. And that's how the firetruck got its name.

The Extreme Vehicle

Author: Tao Illustrator: Anson

One day the St. Albans fire department got a brand new firetruck. It was the best firetruck anyone had seen, so of course somebody wanted it. All kinds of people stole it but they got caught. One person did not get caught and his name was Edward. One day Joe was watching the news about the firetruck being stolen, when the firetruck drove by his shop with Edward inside, so he took his car and chased the fire truck down.

When Joe finally caught up to the firetruck, he sped ahead of it and then jumped onto the ladder. The crook raised the ladder and shook it. Joe fell off the ladder and he almost fell off the fire truck but there was a door that lead inside. Joe snuck around and opened the door and kicked Edward out.

After getting kicked out of the truck, the cops came and arrested Edward. The hero Joe returned the firetruck to the St. Albans fire department and got a reward. The firemen cheered for Joe and decided to name the fire truck the Extreme Vehicle.

The Great Rescue

Author: Abbie Illustrator: Masie

The new firetruck was coming. It had everything. A ladder, a hose, gear, tools.... but not a name. The firetruck had not had one 911 call. Then all of a sudden the firemen heard a BIG LOUD noise, Beep! Beep! It was their first 911 call! The call came from a farm. There had been a big storm last night. But it took a little while to get there, because the call was from Swanton.

When they got there, the guy told them there were two problems. A cat was stuck in a tree and a cow was stuck in a ditch, filled with water up to her neck. One guy took the ladder to get the cat and that took 5 minutes. Then they all rushed to the backyard to get Bessie the cow. She had given up and her body had shut down. She was really heavy.

One of the firemen got swimming gear on and took the fire hoses and tied them under her belly. Then all ten of them pulled and pulled the hoses.Then finally they got her out!! Next, one of the firemen said, "Let's name her Bessie." "Sure, the others said." Every day the firemen visited Bessie. That's how the fire truck got her name.

Thank you Thanks to all who contributed to the production of this booklet about how the St. Albans City Firetruck Got Its Name.

How Our Fire Truck Got Its Name  

Written and illustrated by 3rd and 4th grade students at St. Albans City School

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