Fire Station #3
Dedicated to Early Bennett (Benny) Shaw
191 E. Quail Run Road
Rockwall, TX 75087
This station was dedicated on October 24, 2009.
This station was funded by the 2004-05 Bond Election
Early Bennett (Benny) Shaw
Mr. Shaw was born on August 28, 1898 in Rockwall County. The Shaw Family originally moved to the Rockwall area in 1846. His father moved the family to Tula, Texas and began farming. Benny had to quit school in 8Th grade to go to work farming with his dad. After a year or so, his father lost everything he owned and moved the family back to Rockwall. Benny joined the United States Marines in 1918. He served two years of military service in World War I at the rank of Private. He got married in 1924 to Golden Scott and they had two children.
Mr. Shaw began working for Doc Snowâ€™s Ford dealership in Rockwall as a mechanic and worked there until he opened his own business in 1936. The business he opened was an automotive repair garage / parts store / gas pump which he operated until 1968. He was a lifetime member of the First Baptist Church of Rockwall. He served as a Deacon
for thirty-four years. He has also served as Church Trustee, Treasurer, and Assistant Sunday School Superintendent and on virtually every church committee at some point in time over the years. The last church committee he served on was a Mission Committee, which worked on formation of the Dalrock Baptist Church. He was a charter member of the Lions Club, Member of Rockwall Rotary Club, and member of the local American Legion, member of the Shriner's Club, and he received a fifty year pin from the Masonic
Lodge in 1979. He also served as a Rockwall School Board member for six years, three of which he served as School Board President. He also served as a Rockwall City Council member for ten years.
Mr. Shaw was always very active in the community. In the 1940â€™s, the school board decided to move the football field from the Dobbs Elementary parking lot to the location it is in today. At that time, it was located just behind the old high school and known as Wisdom Field. The local men along with Mr. Shaw would work at night forming and mixing concrete with a small mixer to make the concrete seats which were later replaced by bleachers. He built the hand rails at the main entrance of the Old Rockwall County Court House, the hand rails for the old First Christian Church, the hand rails for the old Baptist Church on Rusk Street and repaired the bars on the County Jail cells so the inmates could not reach out and pick the locks.
Over the years Mr. Shaw helped many people within the community by fixing their cars, trucks, tractors and equipment in the field. When many of them could not afford it, he would just write it down in his payment book and tell them to pay him when they could afford to do so. During the gas rationing of World War II, many of the farmers would give their extra gas stamps to Mr. Shaw. He would use them to help people who could not get them. One day a solider on leave came through town headed home and he was out of gas and
did not have any stamps. Mr. Shaw gave him some stamps and filled up his car without charging him and sent him on his way.
Mr. Shaw joined the Rockwall Volunteer Fire Department in 1939 and retired in 1968 with twenty-nine years of service. Upon his retirement, he was made a lifetime honorary firefighter for the Rockwall Volunteer Fire Department. During his career he served as Fire Chief for many of those years. Mr. Shaw would always repair the fire equipment and only charge for the parts, if at all. He also fixed all of the city vehicles. In the late 30â€™s and early 40â€™s
Mr. Shaw, along with J. E. (Lighting) Bridges, Sam Huse, and Wade (Cut) McCoulskey virtually built the first modern fire truck for the City of Rockwall from a 1939 wrecked chassis, putting together the frames and body, adding a water tank, pump and mounting the fire equipment on it in his garage. As time went by, they purchased a 1942 open top chassis from the Ford Plant and again built the body, water tank, and pump and mounted the fire equipment to it in his shop. As time went by, Mr. Shaw took a 1949 Dodge Power Wagon panel van and made it into the Cityâ€™s first ambulance.
Mr. Shaw always wore a cap which looked like a train conductorâ€™s cap. During a fire in the early 50â€™s, Rockwall went to Royse City when the square was on fire. One of the fire hose couplings hit him in the head. When he got home and tried to take his cap off it would not come off because it was stuck to his head. It was stuck with blood from where the coupling had hit him and he did not even know he was bleeding. It was also reported that Mr. Shaw always had to watch his cousin O.L. Steger because he always got too hot fighting fire.
Mr. Shaw was respected by everyone in town as a fireman, church member, business owner, school board member, city council member and member of many civic organizations. Mr. E. B. Shaw passed away in May 1988. Mr. Shaw served as a member of the Rockwall Fire Department for 29 years. His years of service will be missed and his dedication and loyalty will never be forgotten. He served the citizens of Rockwall his entire life as well as serving his Country.