Firefighter, Hose Rescue Co. Member since 2010
Mike Conforti
Captain,
Hose Rescue Co.

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Halesite Fire Department Swears in New Officers for 2013

Sunday, May 5, 2013

The Halesite Fire Department held its 112th Annual Inspection Dinner on Saturday, May 4th at The Huntington Crescent Club. Among the biggest galas in years, Halesite welcomed a new Chief, Dan McConnell, and gave its heartfelt thanks to its outgoing Chief, Andy Magerle.

The following Department Officers were sworn in during the ceremony:

Chief - Dan McConnell
1st Assistant Chief - Greg Colonna
2nd Assistant Chief - Jamie Magerle
Chairman of the Board of Trustees - Ex-Chief Dennis Magerle
Treasurer - Roger Ketcham
Secretary - Jen Pavelka
Assistant Secretary - Kate Kuntz
Chaplain - Nick Berghela
Sergeant-at-Arms - Bob Wenk

The following Line and Rescue Officers were also sworn in:

Captains

Hose Company - Ex-Chief Tom Holly
Engine Company - Dom Spada
Hook & Ladder Company - Erik Weber
Rescue Squad - Kate Kuntz

Lieutenants

Hose Company - Hugh O'Brien
Engine Company - Ex-Chief Mike Magerle
Hook & Ladder Company - Ex-Chief Pete Magerle
Rescue Squad - 1st Lieutenant - Joe Grant
Rescue Squad - 2nd Lieutenant - Jesse Sammis

One of the evening's highlights was the recognition of outgoing Chief Andy Magerle. Chief McConnell recognized him for his many achievements during his tenure as Chief, including his calm and steady leadership during last year's Super Storm, Sandy.

The following members were recognized during the ceremony for reaching years of service milestones:

Roger Ketcham - 45 Years
Ex-Chief Frank Grasso - 45 Years
Neil Nugent - 25 Years
Larry Northcote - 25 Years
Nick Berghela - 25 Years
Bill Peer - 20 Years

Each member recognized received a special pin denoting their years of service. In the Department's May meeting the following Tuesday, Hose Rescue Company member John Solano was recognized for 25 years of service.

Among those recognized for their years of service to Halesite was Ex-Chief Walter Sammis. Walter was recognized for 50 years of service. By achieving this milestone, Walt joins his father, Al, as the only father and son duo ever to reach 50 years of service in Halesite. Walt was presented with a special 50 year Department Badge as well as a gold service pin.

Several local politicians gave their thanks to the membership, Ex-Chief Andy Magerle and 50-Year member Ex-Chief Walt Sammis. On hand were Suffolk County Legislator William Spencer, Assemblymen Andy Raia and Chad Lupinacci, State Senator Carl Marcellino, Town Clerk Jo-ann Raia, Councilwoman Susan Berland, Councilman Mark Cuthbertson, Councilman Mark Mayoka and FASNY Assistant Sergeant-at-Arms Eugene Perry. Letters of commendation were also provided by Senator Charles Schumer and County Executive Steve Ballone.

During the ceremony, Halesite's Chief, Dan McConnell, introduced a new award. Known as the "Spirit of Halesite" award, this recognition was bestowed on two people from the Island Park Fire Department who developed a strong friendship with Halesite in the months following the aftermath of Super Storm Sandy. The new award is intended to recognize the loyalty and friendship of non-members towards the Halesite Fire Department. This year's recipients are Ex-Captain Russell Waters and his son Owen.

Chief McConnell also recognized Ex-Chief Andy Magerle as the Department's Firefighter of the Year. Rescue Squad Captain Kate Kuntz was named the Department's Rescue Person of the Year.

The evening was made possible by Halesite's Board of Fire Commissioners. Members and their guests celebrated well into the night with live music provided by The Generators.

Photographed above are Chairman of the Board of Fire Commissioners, John Cannon, congratulating Chief Dan McConnell.




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