Illinois State Library

Illinois Center for the Book

Individual Author Record

General Information

Name:  Dekalb E. Walcott  

Pen Name: 

Genre: C:ADULT Non-Fiction



Illinois Connection

Walcott lives in Chicago.

Biographical and Professional Information

Retired Battalion Chief Dekalb E. Walcott Jr. served 31 years as a Chicago firefighter starting his career in November 1978 as a 30-day wonder and hired during affirmative action. Chicago Fire Department was short of personnel, as a result Fire Academy training only lasted 30 days. Throughout his career Dekalb served as Firefighter to Battalion Chief along with serving in fire prevention and public education. He has received numerous awards for community service, served as Chairman for Black Firefighters day and was responsible for helping Chicago establish a smoke detector and carbon monoxide ordinance in the mid 1980's. Dekalb sponsored a 100-photo pictorial display during Black History month in February of 1984 honoring Chicago's unsung Black Heroes of Fire, which started his career as Chicago's Black Firefighter historian. Dekalb has served on the executive board of the African American Firefighters and Paramedic League of Chicago as historian, corresponding secretary, sergeant at arms, vice president and President. Today he spends his time researching black firefighter history and publishing its work.

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