Tuesday, March 20th, 2018

Huntington County celebrates 50 years of 911

Posted: Friday, March 2, 2018

Treasurer of the State Kelly Mitchell, chair of the Statewide 911 Board, was in Huntington on Thursday, March 1, to celebrate the 50th anniversary of 911 Emergency Services in Indiana. The celebration was held in the Huntington County Public Safety Dispatch Center, 332 E. State Street.

The family of former Congressman J. Edward Roush was present, along with Huntington Mayor Brooks Fetters; Huntington County Sheriff Terry Stoffel; Melissa Taylor, dispatch director for the Huntington County Public Safety Dispatch; Bill Soards, president of AT&T Indiana; Ed Reuter, executive director of the Statewide 911 Board; County Commissioner president Larry Buzzard and County Commissioner Tom Wall. To mark the anniversary, a proclamation was read to mark the day as Congressman J. Edward Roush Day.

According to Soards, the first 911 call in Huntington was completed at the Indiana Bell Telephone office from Congressman J. Edward Roush and answered by City Police officer Fredric Dutt on March 1, 1968. The first actual 911 call was made on February 16, 1968 in Haleyville, Alabama.

According to Taylor, “The Huntington County dispatch received 21,451 total 911 calls during 2017. Now with the cell phone becoming more popular, the dispatch center is beginning to send and receive text messages. There were a total of 478 text message sent in 2017.”

Reuter said, “The State of Indiana sends between 15 and 16,000 text messages a month. Last year, over 170,000 text sessions happened throughout the state.”

Shown in the photo at left, receiving the 911 anniversary plaque from left, are Pete Wright and wife, Melody Roush-Wright; Ed Reuter, executive director, Statewide 911 Board; Joel Roush and his wife, Margaret, and Treasurer of State Kelly Mitchell, chair of the Statewide 911 board.