Emergency service providers have long ties to Erie Avenue

Erie Avenue has long been associated with the community's emergency service providers. Today, both the St. Marys City Police Department and Crystal Fire Department are located along the roadway, and anyone in need of emergency assistance can simply call 9-1-1, or even contact either department directly. Early in the community's history, that was not the case, however. "There was a time in St. Marys where [if] you needed a policeman, you picked up the phone and you called Rocky Fleming, the night clerk at the Mullendean," said local historian Ray Beimel. Beimel explained that, once Fleming was contacted, he would alert the police by "throwing a switch that lit a red light on a telephone pole at the corner of Erie and Lafayette." Once the police noticed the light was on, an officer would walk to the Mullendean to talk to Rocky to see what the problem was. "It was a very gentler, kinder time back then," Beimel said.