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54 years of memories

Toledo Firefighters Trian in Practice Burn

May 30, 2013
By John Speer - Editor , Toledo Chronicle, Tama News-Herald

"I've seen a lot of changes, I lived there long enough," Edna Neville said last week after Toledo firefighters finished their last training session with a live burn of Neville's family home for the past 54 years.

On the corner of West High and West streets, Edna and her late husband Bill, raised their family of six children in the two-story frame home beginning in 1959 when they rented it from Gladys Conaway.

At the time Conaway ran Conaway's Store, a neighborhood grocery a couple of doors south on West Street.

Article Photos

Chronicle/John Speer

The Nevilles rented the house for one-and-one-half years before buying it. The eight-room home had two baths.

In addition, a couple of garage buildings on the property housed Bill's trucking business.

Edna recalls the Toledo depot on the branch Northwestern Railroad line was located directly west of their home. She said it was fairly common for trains to stop there and unload coal.

An ice house business next to the Conaway Store was also still operating when the Neville family moved in and the Tama County Road Department shop was to the north. The Lorensen and Beale Elevator and Iowa Electric operating department were located east of the home, now the site of the Toledo Fire station.

Edna says jokingly "When they tore down to the elevator I could see clear up to the stoplight. When they build the new fire station it took away my view. Bu I still loved to sit on the porch and watch the traffic go by. You have many remembrances when a person lives there so long."

Bill died in 2004, but Edna continued to live in the home until it was purchased recently by New Century FS. She has moved to n apartment in Toledo.

New Century FS plans to use the property for equipment storage manager Mark Kouba told The Chronicle.



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