PRESS RELEASE – November 12, 2019 Mystery Solved – We have our identity back! Fire Station Monument Plaque found a decade after it “disappeared”

Mystery Solved – We have our identity back!

Fire Station Monument Plaque found a decade after it “disappeared”


Menlo Park Fire Protection District

Captain Jeff Schreiber and Engineer Walter Vidosh after reinstalling the Fire Station 77 Monument Plaque – Credit Menlo Fire

          A decade after its mysterious disappearance, Fire Station 77 located on Chilco Street in the Belle Haven area of Menlo Park near Facebook, has its identity back. The monument plaque, which provides each Fire Station with the year it was built, who the Fire Board, Chief, Architect and General Contractor was, has been found, cleaned up and reinstalled. The plaque disappeared when the fire station was last painted ten years ago. Firefighter Nathan Cipres was off-duty and looking through some items for sale on the Grandson’s Estate Sales and Liquidation auction site, when he spotted the plaque and contacted the on-duty Battalion Chief, Joey Figone, who brought it to the attention of the Fire Chief.

Fire Chief Schapelhouman said “I was involved in the building and dedication of that Fire Station, twenty-two years ago. I remember calling down there about nine years ago and asking them to go out and look at the monument plaque for the completion date because I was working on a staff report to purchase property, located behind the station, from the City of Menlo Park. That’s when they told me it wasn’t there! We tried to call the painting company, but they had gone out of business because of the economic recession, we then checked all the scrap yards in the Bay Area, nothing. I thought for sure it was gone forever and I was mad, who steals from the Fire Department, that’s pretty low! So when I got the message from Acting Battalion Chief Figone wondering if “we were interested in this Piece of Menlo memorabilia”, I thought to myself of course, who wouldn’t want to their recover stolen property and possibly locate the thief that took it!”

The auction house located in Walnut Creek, was immediately contacted and the Fire District’s property was returned without question or provocation. In-fact, they were very helpful and told the Fire District that the collection for sale had belonged to a single man, who had no family, and had passed away suddenly. They believed he was a carpenter by trade, based upon all the tools and equipment he had amassed. “Some times things happen for reasons you can’t explain or completely understand, I’d like to believe this guy reached out to absolve himself. If so, case closed, you’re forgiven! Chief Schapelhouman said.”

The Fire Station 77 Monument Plaque was found on an auction web-site – Photo Grandson’s Estate Sales

More: Home News