Nineteen members and two guests attended the HFRA's Spring Meeting at the Hamden Elks Hall on April 9th. Before the start of the meeting, the members gathered for a group photo in front of the hall. Following a brief meeting, the members sat down for another fine meal prepared by Brian Forsyth and the Elks' own Ollie.
In Some Communities Whistles Replaced Sirens During WWII
This New Haven Evening Register article dated April 10, 1942 reported that whistles would soon replace sirens as warning devices on New Haven fire apparatus, lest the fire sirens be confused with those that provided air raid warnings. We would like to know if this practice continued for the duration of the war. And did it extend to Hamden? Maybe.
Courtesy of the New Haven Free Public Library Microfilm Collection
Co. 7's 1935 Dodge Bros. truck was equipped with a WWII-era whistle, and it was often used in place of the siren well into the 1970s. Whether or not other Hamden apparatus were also equipped with whistles during the war is a question that has yet to be answered.
Three Honored at 2014 Local 2687 Annual Dinner April 5, 2014
Retirees Surprise and Angiletta
Local 2687, I.A.F.F. honored three veteran firefighters during the local's annual retirement dinner last Saturday evening at the Laurel View Country Club. Local Vice President Dave Beaton emceed the event, which honored retired Deputy Chief Robert Surprise (33 years of service), Firefighter-Paramedic Roberta Angiletta (19 years of service), and Firefighter John Bradbury (15 years of service), who was not present.
Chief David Berardesca thanked and praised all three retirees for their service. He called Surprise as a true "gentleman's gentleman" and a "Renaissance Man," noting that Bob had worked himself up through all the ranks to become Deputy Fire Chief. "I could not have asked for a better deputy chief."
Receiving the Local's gift of a retirement watch from Local President Kurt Vogt, Roberta praised the personnel she worked with during her 19 year tenure. Noting the many sleepless nights on the rescue, she extended a special thanks to "two special people, Kurt Vogt and Paul Turner, for putting up with me all these years." On her first day on the job, a fellow firefighter riding Engine 4 lent her his bunker coat to keep warm. "I knew then it was going to be a good career; I knew I was accepted . . . It was my honor and my pleasure working with all of you guys."
Bob Surprise praised the many officers and firefighters he served with throughout his 33-year career, and gave special recognition to his family "for putting up with the nights, the weekends, and all the holidays and missed special occasions," something that all career firefighters and their families understand.
Music for the event was provided by DJ, Firefighter Doug O'Rourke.
Bob Mordecai, Austin Williams, Bob Anthony, John Bellmore, Tom Doherty, Gil Spencer, Dave Johnson, Ed Kopjanski, Mark Pratt, Jim Leddy, John Poe, Bob Slater, Harold Mangler, Chick Manware, Jim Dunlop, Bob Westervelt, Rev. Owen Sanderson and John O'Dea
Future History Dept.
Newest Firefighter Sworn In
Chief Berardesca, Firefighter Borrelli and D/C Merwede (Photo by Ff. Kevin Shields)
The rotunda of Memorial Town Hall was the setting last Monday for the swearing-in of Hamden's newest firefighter, West Haven native Nicholas Borrelli.
In an email to the website, Deputy Chief Gary Merwede noted that Nick "put himself through paramedic school following UCONN to achieve his goal of becoming a career firefighter." Prior to his appointment, Firefighter-Paramedic Borrelli had served for three years with the New London Fire Department.
D/C Merwede also noted that in Borrelli's interview with the Fire Commission, he "took the time to recount some of our [HFD] history, and was very informed as to the current structure of the department."
D/C Merwede credits the HFRA website and the Local for "making a good impression on the web!"
The members of the Hamden Fire Retirees Association wish Firefighter-Paramedic Borrelli a long, fulfilling and safe career with the Hamden Fire Department.