Owners Mel and Lucy Folbrecht took over Fire Equipment Services in 1986 when Lucy’s dad chose to retire. Lucy’s dad founded the business in 1946:
“Those were the days of soda acid fire extinguishers,” Lucy said. “Dad ran the business with one pick up truck and refilled the extinguishers in his garage sometimes with my little brother’s help behind his home.”
Once the business grew, he built the downtown shop they operate out of today. Mel and Lucy left their individual careers, in restaurant consulting and real estate respectively, to run Fire Equipment Services together.
“Buying the business allowed us to work together and raise our son in Fort Pierce,” Lucy shared. From the start, customer satisfaction was the couple’s top priority. They trained their office staff and technicians to treat every customer, whether the customer had one extinguisher or hundreds, with the same level of importance.
Mel and Lucy’s passion for fire protection expands beyond their business. Mel has helped train fire marshals for the past 34 years and the couple initiated the installation of a fully functional fire lab at their local community college. They wanted the ability to not only train their employees well but also the local authorities.
Now the couple is ready to retire and are leaving their branch in the hands of their capable team, who are all joining the Pye-Barker Fire family. Employee Mike Hutchinson has been with Fire Equipment Services for 34 years and will continue as Service Manager for the new PBFS Ft. Pierce. Stephanie Lawson has been with the company for 15 years and will remain as the AR Manager. Mel will remain available to offer his design and fire suppression training talent to Pye-Barker Fire.
“Many of our technicians have been with us for over 10 – 15 – 20 year. Their creative ideas to make our business better and better have made our company one of the best. Their professional customer service has helped make our business successful. We will really miss our fine crew: Matthew – Stacy – Scotty – Carol – Tracy -Dan – Brian – Justin – Jessie – Dominic,” Lucy said.
She concluded by sharing her gratitude for the past and confidence for the future: “Fire Equipment Services of St. Lucie, Inc. grew rapidly and we are entirely grateful for all the good people surrounding us. We’re positive Pye-Barker will improve not only our employees’ abilities, but provide the best service for our customers.”
Mel and Lucy, Pye-Barker Fire thanks you for entrusting us with your family business and your loyal customers. We are proud to carry on your legacy. A big welcome to the entire Fire Equipment Services team!
Pye-Barker is a proud collection of family fire protection companies and has provided many owners with a satisfying exit strategy that provided peace of mind for themselves and their staff. If you would like to learn more about what a future with Pye-Barker would look like for your business, please visit www.pyebarkerfire.com/acquisitions to fill out a confidential form. You can also contact our VP of Business Development, Chuck Reimel, directly at 910-612-6252. We look forward to hearing from you!