By Karen Kruse

  • Foreword by: Mike Ditka
  • Preface by: Retired Chicago Fire Commissioner James T. Joyce

A Chicago Firehouse: Stories of Wrigleyville's Engine 78 is the story of Chicago's firehouse across from Wrigley Field (home of the World Series Champion Chicago Cubs! ), and the diverse neighborhood she serves.

My opening paragraph reads: "Once upon a time is the way all good fairy tales begin, but this particular tale is true. It is the story of an American firehouse, the firemen who love her, and the area she serves. The knights on white horses in this epic are actual heroes riding a bright red fire engine when help is needed. This is the story of Engine Co. 78."

Back cover of the book: From its humble beginnings in 1884 as a one-story frame building with one bay to house Hose Co. 4 and its team of horses, Eng. Co. 78 has been the firefighting sentinel at the end of Waveland Avenue, sitting in the shadow of Wrigley Field. Using vintage photographs and moving stories from firefighters themselves, Karen Kruse captures the spirit and heroism of this historic Chicago landmark.

Capt. Robert F. Kruse served the Chicago Fire Dept. for 30 years, half of those at Wrigleyville's Eng. 78. Growing up within the close-knit firefighting community, Ms. Kruse records the dramatic and touching stories from her father's and his peers' experiences, and combines them in this volume exploring the unique history of Lakeview's firehouse, including a foreword by Mike Ditka, and preface by Fire Commissioner James Joyce. With details about little known historic districts and a brief guide to Chicago's cemeteries and their relations to firefighters,
A Chicago Firehouse: Stories of Wrigleyville's Engine 78 relays in first-hand accounts some of Chicago's most fiery tragedies, the brave men who battled them, and the diversity of the neighborhood that housed them.

Author Karen Kruse, a descendant of three generations of Chicago firefighters, is a member of Mensa and the author of several articles on Chicago cemeteries.

A Chicago Firehouse: Stories of Wrigleyville's Engine 78, ISBN #0-7385-1857-3, is in its 16th printing !!!

SPECIAL NOTE: My beloved dad, Robert F. Kruse, subject of my book, passed away Easter Sunday, April 24, 2011. Dad, I'm proud to have honored you by writing this book, my finest achievement. I'll see you on the other side. My everlasting and eternal love, KK.

If you would like to purchase a personally autographed copy of my "labor of love" directly from me (the author), by check for $24.95 ppd., please drop me a note for address details:

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A Chicago Firehouse: Stories of Wrigleyville's Engine 78

...is a tribute to ALL firefighters everywhere!

It makes a great gift for every firefighter on your list!

A MUST have for EVERY Cubs fan!

Nominated for the Pulitzer Prize in History!

For more information, click on the links below!

Scheduled Appearances & Awards

Related Links


Articles from the Daily Herald, the Courier News, the News-Star, and the Booster

Chicago Sun-Times Article

Related Works

What's in this book?

Foreword, Preface, and Table of Contents

Karen Kruse, Writing Biography

New Counter! Visitors since September 23, 2006

Upcoming Appearances!

Links! Reviews! Daily Herald! Times!

Writings! The Family Business! Foreword! Biography!

"Daddy is My Hero"
The author with her Dad, April, 1963, and again, December, 2005.

"Karen Kruse, author, September 22, 2007, and again March 5, 2011."

Copyright 2001-2011
Karen L. Kruse. All rights reserved.