by KAREN LAGRANGE COX
For the last thirty years, lifelong Broussard resident Bryan Champagne has been serving the City of Broussard as a volunteer firefighter. In 2008, then-Mayor Charlie Langlinais appointed him as the Broussard Fire Chief, a part-time position.
After graduating from Ovey Comeaux High School in 1992, Champagne became a volunteer firefighter in Broussard the following year. It is a role he says he continues to this day.
During Champagne’s years as a volunteer firefighter, he was employed as a firefighter at the Lafayette Regional Airport from 1995-1996. From 1996-1999 Champagne worked in the oil field, measuring pressure in pipelines.
Starting in 1995, he worked to get on with the Lafayette Fire Department (LFD) and successfully obtained full-time employment at LFD in 1999. He is currently a Captain at Station 2 on Mudd Avenue in Lafayette.
The Louisiana First Responders Christian Association inducted Champagne into their Fire Fighters Hall of Fame in November 2020.
In his younger years, he worked at various places, including Riverside Inn and the donut shop, which was in the parking lot at Billeaud’s Grocery. Champagne said the donut shop later moved to Towne Pharmacy’s current property. He also worked at Adrien’s and Eckerd’s for four years, both of which were in the shopping center at Southpark Road and Pinkhook Road on the south side of Lafayette.
Champagne has been married to the former Monique Broussard since 1992. They have two children and raising a third child. During his time off from work, he enjoys camping, spending time with family, and tinkering around the house.
About the Broussard Fire Department
The fire department responds to calls for residential and commercial fires, grass fires, vehicle accidents, emergency medical, hazardous materials, gas leaks, and rescues. The BFD responds to calls within the City of Broussard and some areas within St. Martin Parish and unincorporated Lafayette Parish.
BFD’s Property Insurance Association of Louisiana (PIAL) rating is currently a Class 3. They are rated every five years.
BFD has twenty-plus volunteer firemen, forty-five part-time employees, and one full-time employee. The full-time employee is the department’s administrative assistant to the chief, Angela Ragusa. Ragusa is also an inspector.
Broussard Fire Department Locations:
- Fire Station 1 – 501 1st Street. The staff consists of two firefighters during the day.
- Fire Station 2 (Main Station) – 501 East Main Street. This station is staffed 24/7, 365 days a week. Each shift staffs three firefighters.
- Fire Station 3 – 200 West Fairfield Drive. The staff consists of two firefighters during the day.
Volunteer firefighters also respond to calls any time of the day as they are available.
The first known documentation for the Broussard Volunteer Fire Department was from 1943. The company that sold a pump to Broussard still had the sale record from that year.