It is with deep regret that we announce the passing of retired Hamden firefighter and HFRA member Harry Cubbellotti on October 23rd. Harry served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War and was a proud and dedicated member of the Hamden Fire Department from 1957 until his retirement in 1993.
Harry was the husband of the late AnnMarie Rose Martone Cubbellotti. He was the father of Dawn (Daniel) Farricielli, Joseph J. (Karen) Cubbellotti, and the late Lisa Marie Cubbellotti; and the grandfather of five. Harry's brothers, Fiore (Frank) and Albert Cubbellotti, were also career firefighters with Hamden and West Haven, respectively.
Calling hours are Friday (today), October 25th, from 4 to 8 p.m. at the North Haven Funeral Home, 36 Washington Avenue (corner of Clintonville Rd.) in No. Haven. Harry's funeral procession will leave the funeral home Saturday morning at 9:30. A Mass of Christian burial will be celebrated in St. Therese Church, 555 Middletown Avenue, North Haven at 10:00. Interment with full military honors will follow in All Saints Cemetery.
Contributions in Harry's memory may be sent to Ali's Angels Fund, c/o Yale-New Haven Hospital Office of Development, P.O. Box 1849, New Haven, CT 06508-1849.
October 27, 1978 New Haven Journal-Courier Article
A Snapshot of Firefighters' Lives 35 Years Ago
Thirty-five years ago this week, Journal-Courier reporter Regina Hawkes spent the day with the men of Platoon 4 at Station 2 to glean insights into life in a Hamden fire station. One of the guys was Firefighter Harry Cubbellotti, who passed away this past Wednesday. Harry was 85.
(Courtesy of Gil Spencer)
Saxony Coat Company
1443 Dixwell Avenue
Saturday, September 15, 1984
A two-alarm fire at the Saxony Coat Co. at 1443 Dixwell Avenue broke out right after midnight on September 15, 1984. The news photo below shows the crew of Engine 3, the 1973 Maxim Telesqurt. The fire was thought to have been of suspicious origin, but the subsequent report of the fire marshal was that the fire was electrical in nature.
Firefighter Harry Cubbellotti can be clearly seen standing by Engine 3 in the lower of the two color photos.
The Hamden Chronicle, Thursday, September 20, 1984 (Courtesy of Gil Spencer)
New Haven Register, Saturday, September 15, 1984
New Haven Register, Sunday, September 16, 1984
The Hamden Chronicle, Thursday, September 20, 1984
The HPD "arson squad" mentioned in the above article was quite a contentious issue at the time. However, the unit was relatively short-lived as Connecticut state law mandated that the role of fire marshal was a fire department function. When needed, additional fire investigative resources were always available from the Connecticut State Police.
Officer Rick Orser, Asst. Chief Walt Macdowall and Cmdr. (B/C) Tom Doherty
Website thanks to retired Deputy Chief Clark Hurlburt for providing these
two color photos taken at the Saxony Coat Company fire (photographer unknown).
Those who can be identified: Asst. Chief Walt Macdowall (yellow coat), Ff. Ralph Tomaselli talking to Chief John Tramontano (white coat), unknown, Ff. Rick Kenyon (facing left), Ff. Harry Cubbellotti (in helmet), and Ff. Doug Yocher by Engine 3 door.
Capt. Albert Purce in 1942
Purce's Dedication Obviously
Not Motivated by Remuneration
A couple of weeks ago we posted a newspaper article from 1948 about Capt. Al Purce's appointment as Hamden first full-time fire marshal. From 1944 until his 1948 appointment, Capt. Purce had been performing the duties of fire marshal in addition to his duties as one of the two shift commanders.
According to the 1946-47 Hamden town budget, and notwithstanding the enormous inflation of the past sixty-seven years, what do you suppose Capt. Purce's additional services as fire marshal cost Hamden's taxpayers per week?
Scroll to the bottom.
Classic Old HFD Helmet Donated to HFRA
Dep. Chief James Strain served as a career firefighter from 1942 until his retirement in 1973, when he was Deputy Chief of Platoon 2. Strain was promoted to Batt. Chief (later retitled "Deputy Chief," and now Batt. Chief, once again) in January 1961, replacing V. Paul Leddy, who had been appointed Chief two months earlier. Chief Strain's daughter, Jean, recently donated his helmet to the HFRA - yet another piece of HFD history for the archives. Thank you, Jean!
D/C Strain at the Reilly's fire, Christmas Day 1964
Helmet of Dep. Chief James Strain
Answer: You get an A if you answered "a."
In addition to Capt. Purce's duties as an 84-hour a week shift commander, for taking on the duties and responsibilities of fire marshal from 1944-48, Purce's annual salary was boosted by a whopping twenty-five bucks!