Long-time firefighter opens historical museum in Bonne Terre - KFVS12 News & Weather Cape Girardeau, Carbondale, Poplar Bluff

Long-time firefighter opens historical museum in Bonne Terre

(Source: Mike Mohundro/KFVS) (Source: Mike Mohundro/KFVS)
(Source: Mike Mohundro/KFVS) (Source: Mike Mohundro/KFVS)
(Source: Mike Mohundro/KFVS) (Source: Mike Mohundro/KFVS)
(Source: Mike Mohundro/KFVS) (Source: Mike Mohundro/KFVS)
(Source: Mike Mohundro/KFVS) (Source: Mike Mohundro/KFVS)
BONNE TERRE, MO (KFVS) -

Bonne Terre, Missouri houses many unique places in town including the Bonne Terre Mines and a space museum, but did you know there is a fire fighter museum as well?

David Pratte spent a lot of his days as a fire fighter in St. Francois County.

He started as a fire fighter with the Bonne Terre Fire Department and is currently the fire chief at Big River Fire Department.

Since fire fighting holds a special place in Pratte's heart, he decided decades ago to acquire historic items connected to fire fighting and make his own museum.

Over the years, Pratte has collected hundreds and hundreds of items. These items range anywhere from old original photos, to Bonne Terre's first fire truck in 1929.

Pratte feels the items here have great value and each have stories with them of what fire fighters endured and the times they helped people.

"It's hard to describe why you do the things you do," he said. "You go along for months and months, everything's routine, you make your calls. Then you save a life. And that does it all."

Pratte believes his collection is a great way to show children and people of all ages what it was like in the beginning and how they have progressed as a fire department through time.

Pratte said he has visitors, including fire fighters, come by and are amazed at what the Bonne Terre Fire Department used to be and how they operated.

As a fire fighter, Pratte thinks the memorabilia is very special.

"When I'm able to share it, that's what's it's all about," said Pratte.

Copyright 2015 KFVS. All rights reserved.

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