Jean Nimba joins the Hamden Fire Department with a wealth of knowledge and experience, and a lifelong dream of becoming a firefighter. Since 2016, Jean has been a volunteer firefighter for the Town of Trumbull, taking advantage of many training opportunities and completing his Fire I Certification.
While gaining this experience, Jean continued his education at the New Britain EMS Academy, where he graduated in 2021 with his Paramedic license. In 2019, Jean became an employee of Nelson Ambulance, where he has been working as both an EMT and Paramedic.
Jean also holds an Associate Degree in in Business from Housatonic Community College and earned an electrician license from Lincoln Technical Institute. Jean will be working on the 4th Platoon at Station 2 under the direction of Captain Martin.
Michael McKnight joins the Hamden Fire Department with an abundance of enthusiasm. Michael's hard work, dedication and determination has led him to where he is today.
Every report received from the Connecticut Fire Academy identified Michael to be superior in all his test results, both physically and mentally.
Michael also brings a wealth of knowledge and experience through his fifteen years working for Yale-New Haven Hospital as well as his current employment as an EMT for American Medical Response out of New Haven.
Michael will be working on the 2nd Platoon at Station 2 under the direction of Lieutenant DeBurra.
The above information on Nimba and McKnight was taken directly from Chief Naples' remarks delivered at their May 26, 2023 swearing-in ceremony.
Chief Naples welcomed numerous active and retired department members who attended to witness the two newest members of the department sworn in. After noting the Wednesday graduation ceremony held at the Connecticut Fire Academy, "that reflected the hard work and determination they endured over the past 15 weeks," the Chief acknowledged another group of individuals.
"I would like to take a moment to thank the families and friends of all our members, especially those of our new firefighters. Today marks your addition into a new family, one who will be there to lend support in more ways than I can express. The Fire Family, brothers and sisters who understand one another on a level [to which] most cannot relate. There are many quiet sacrifices that firefighters make that go unnoticed - many nights, weekends away from family. Holidays or birthday parties are missed, sleepless nights of spouses, unsure of what the morning we bring. Difficult calls that you'll carry with you for longer than you would like. But with all this comes the support of our crews, officers, and the department ensuring that we will bring you home at the end of your tour."
Mayor Garrett thanked the attendees and noted the presence of the many retirees, "who are still part of the family." She congratulated Firefighters Nimba and McKnight and noted the cooperation of the Civil Service Commission and the Fire Commission that helped to facilitiate their appointments. The Mayor has been a staunch supporter of the Department during her year and a half in office.
Hamden Town Clerk Karimah Mickens administers the oath to Firefighter McKnight and Firefighter/Paramedic Nimba. (CLICK to enlarge)
Before swearing in Firefighters Nimba and McKnight, Town Clerk Mickens noted that Nimba is the first African-American Paramedic to join the Department since 1994 (when Mike Green - a great guy most retirees remember quite well - was among the large group of new hires that came on the job for the first time since 1987).
Firefighter McKnight beams as his badge is pinned by a very special lady in his family. (CLICK to enlarge)
Chief Naples said he was honored to pin on Firefighter/Paramedic Nimba's badge. (CLICK to enlarge)
Fire Commission Chairman Gary Tinney, Town Clerk Mickens, Mayor Garrett, Recruits McKnight and Nimba, Chief Naples, and Commissioner Vic Mitchell (CLICK to enlarge)
The members of the Hamden Fire Retirees Association wish Firefighters McKnight and Nimba long, happy, healthy, and fulfilling careers on the Hamden Fire Department. Be safe, guys!
Ff/Paramedic Mike Green
was the first
Hamden Fire Department's first African-American paramedic was Mike Green, pictured here flanked by then-Capt. Don LaBanca and Batt. Chief Tom Doherty at Hamden Lanes during the 10 days of the Special Olympics World Games of 1995.
Mike was on the team of Hamden medic personnel who volunteered their services during the ten days the World Games held that summer. Three of the ten venues were held in Hamden. The bowling competition was held at Hamden Lanes at the Hamden Mart, basketball was held in the old Quinnipiac College gymnasium on their New Road campus, and the majority of the bicycle race ran the length of Whitney Avenue from the New Haven city line to the Chashire town line.