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Aetna Pioneer- Past President Bill Fraser

posted Mar 4, 2012, 11:53 AM by Charles Mitchell

On September 17, 2011 Bill Fraser put on his Class A uniform and climbed into the officer seat on Ladder 9 for a trip to Dover for the
DVFA Parade.

After a short stop at the Aetna hospitality room he stepped out of the truck on State Street and marched in the parade. That doesn’t sound unusual as there were hundreds of other firefighters from Delaware in the same parade. But this is where the similarity ends. You see, Bill Fraser is 94 years old. He had wrapped up the third of his kidney dialysis treatments for the week the day before and he was ready to parade.

The parade committee and the judges were so impressed that they honored Bill with a Judges Award, the first ever presented to an individual marcher in a DVFA parade.

On the way home just as Ladder 9 was arriving in Newark they were dispatched to a building fire. Arriving on scene Bill was ready to step out and help his fellow members. He was convinced by the crew they could handle it on their own so he stood by until the alarm was declared under control.

What is the definition of “longevity”? When Bill joined the fire service in 1938 he responded on a 1921 Stutz and Old Bessie our 1926 Seagrave with the same commitment, the same enthusiasm, and the same loyalty to the Aetna Hose, Hook and Ladder Company that he displays to this day as our most senior member.

Bill is a retired letter carrier for the US Post Office. He took care of himself his entire life. When his wife Alice’s health declined he was her caregiver. When Alice passed away he continued to live in their home as he does today finding time for an occasional visit to Station 9 to see his fellow members. He drove the Newark Senior Center Bus well into his 80’s. He dedicated his life as a volunteer to help the citizens of Newark.

In the Fire Department he held many offices including President. He was a thoughtful officer and director seldom raising his voice and always leading by example. Bill enjoys a good time with his fellow members. His life is well balanced. He is a devout member of his church.