In 1950 the children were posing by the City's new fire truck (in front of what today is the Firehouse Events Center on Theard Street). Per Mrs. Sharon Vergez Vercellotti, it was a 1949 Seagraves. Seagraves Fire Apparatus is the longest running fire truck manufacturer in America.
In the picture, left to right, are Shirley and John Braun. They lived upstairs in the fire house. Eight year old Sharon, Melinda Blanchard and Sharon's younger brother, Leon Vergez. Melinda lived across the street from the station.
Sharon and her brother lived on Topaz Street (now East 25th Avenue). Streets near C.J. Schoen were at one time named after jewels and minerals*. Today, Miss Sharon and her husband John live in that same childhood home about 1/2 block away. It was the home of her grandparents, Auguste and Berthe Mamer Vergez. They purchased the home in 1903 and planted the pecan trees after the hurricane of 1905. Mr. Vergez served with the Fire Department and was a carriage maker, wagon builder and blacksmith. He designed and built the first pumper-wagon for Jefferson Number 1 Fire Department in 1908. This pumper replaced some bucket brigades and was a significant step forward in technology of the day.
Miss Sharon's father, Henri Vergez, served as Fire Chief for 13 years and as a volunteer for 40 years. His shop was where Bigler Woodworks is located today.