Baltimore City Fire Department ~ Baltimore ~ Maryland November 15, 1935 A light blinked on the telephone switchboard at Fire Department Headquarters. A pencil poised John J. Eagen ,the switchboard operator, clicked his key and took call . "Fire Department" he answered . He knew what the call would be, a request for a municipal ambulance . He handled all such calls, jotted down the address, dispatched the ambulance . A quarter-century of service had made him deft in his job. He was a native Baltimorean, educated in parochial schools and at Loyola High School. He knew the city street by street. On November 14, 1935 Operator Eagen reported to Fire Department Headquarters to began his 14 hour 4 p.m. to 8 a.m. shift. At 3:47 a.m. an ambulance was requested to respond to Fire Department Headquarters. Operator Eagen had suddenly slumped over in his chair. He was transported to Mercy Hospital where he was pronounced dead from a heart attack. BCFD Operator John Joseph Eagen was 53 years old and had served for over 25 years.