DCEMS was placed in service as an independent agency on April 2, 1978 to provide full-time emergency medical care to the residents of Delaware County.

Due to the changes in federal regulations that followed, the funeral homes in the area discontinued the service and Delaware County assumed the responsibility through the Sheriff’s Department until April of 1978. By that time, the Sheriff’s Office was receiving too many calls and couldn’t keep up with both the medical and law enforcement demand. The County Commissioners met with all of the county’s different township administrations, and the result was the need to accept the responsibility of providing Countywide EMS, with the exception of Liberty Township and the city of Delaware.

DCEMS originally began with twenty two employees and two ambulances providing basic life support care. Just a few years later, the Ohio General Assembly authorized advanced life support care, and the County sent five members to Paramedic school almost immediately.  They were Don Witt, Mike Evans, Marty Selvage, Steve Breece and Tim Pickering.

DCEMS Chiefs

  • Ed Dick, 1972 to 1981
  • Don Witt, 1981 to 1985
  • Dick Harter, 1985 to 1986
  • Ed Dick (again), 1986 to 1990
  • Pearline Howald, 1990 to 2004
  • Rob Farmer, 2004 to 2013
  • Michael Schuiling, 2013 to 2019
  • Jeff Fishel, 2019 to Present