Submitted by his Daughter
Julian R. Bley‚ Sr. fought fires for 36 years. He began by joining Edgely Fire Company when he was 15 years old. He then went into the Navy and got married‚ moved to Bristol and continued to fight fires by joining Goodwill Hose Company #3 where he moved through the ranks to Chief and becoming a Bucks County Fire Marshall. After a while he joined Bristol Fire Co. after giving up membership at Goodwill Hose Company. While at Bristol Fire Company he rose to the rank of Chief then he dropped in rank to Asst. Chief. This is the rank he held on the morning of a fire that took his life. It was caused by an arsonist that started a fire at a guard shed of a company that was on strike. Julian gave his life so that another firefighter could live to see his children grow up.
Julian had 7 children. He enjoyed watching them play sports and grow up. Julian has 5 children who followed in his footsteps. Julian was the man that the people of Bristol looked for to help them with anything from teaching the children what to do if they caught on fire‚ or the man that you could call if you had an issue that needed a firefighter’s touch.
Julian was survived by his wife‚ Catherine; 4 sons – Julian Jr.‚ Edward‚ John and Joseph; 3 Daughters – JoAnne‚ Elisa and Jacqueline.
Julian was very pleased when his sons and daughter joined the fire company. I remember when I joined the fire company‚ he was training me on how to tie my knots and I told him that I couldn’t do it. He told me that I was the one who wanted to join the fire company. Well not only did I learn to tie my knots but I learnt how to tie them behind my back. He told me that if I could tie them behind my back I could tie them anywhere because you can’t always see in the smoke of a fire. Then it was time to learn other things about firefighting.
By the time I was done with the fire company training that I had to do to get on the truck‚ my father finally told me that he was not in favor of me joining the company because I was his daughter‚ but I proved to him that I could do it. I fought fires with my Father for 5 years before I gave it up to have a baby. My Father told me after I gave birth that it is time for you to come back. I’m very proud of my father and the way he was always there for the people of Bristol and the time he gave to all of the people around him.
Today in the town of Bristol there is a Memorial with his name and picture on it for Firefighters‚ EMS personnel and the Police Officers of Bristol Boro who died in the line of duty.