New York F.D. Names Library In Honor of Clarence E. Meek

New York F.D. Names Library In Honor of Clarence E. Meek

Dedication ceremonies for the Chief Clarence E. Meek Library of the New York Fire Department included placing the name plaque on the wall. From left are Commissioner Robert O. Lowery, Robert Meek, who represented his father at the dedication, and Chief John T, O'Hagan.

With the dedication of the Chief Clarence E. Meek Library, the New York Fire Department honored a man who has given more than half a century of service to the department. Meek, who is an honorary assistant chief, assembled a collection of books and publications to open a library and reading room for fire fighters in 1939 at the department’s old “fire college” in Long Island City. The library is now on the sixth floor of Fire Department Headquarters at 110 Church Street in Manhattan.

At the library ceremony last February 9, Commissioner Robert O. Lowery and Chief John T. O’Hagan praised the dedication that Meek had shown during his full-time work as unpaid librarian of the New York Fire Department since 1954. Lowery referred to the library dedication as “a very small tribute when weighed against the many positive contributions which Chief Meek has made to the fire service in general and this department in particular.”

While active in business, Meek maintained a close association with his fire department library from its opening until he retired, when he gave full time to his avocation. After starting his career as a fire fighter in the Montgomery, Ala., Fire Department, Meek went to New York City in the 1920s as regional sales manager for the Ahrens-Fox Fire Engine Corporation. In later years, he became a sales representative for Mack Fire Apparatus and was vice president of Garrison Engineering Corporation, a manufacturer of control products.

Meek, who received the honorary titles of captain in 1938, battalion chief in 1953, deputy chief in 1959 and assistant chief in 1967, has been hospitalized for more than a year. His son Robert represented him at the library dedication.

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