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Bill Elletto
Firefighter, Engine Co.

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Halesite Celebrates Chiefs, Officers, and Members at 113th Annual Installation Dinner

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Halesite's Board of Officers (back row L-R; 1st Asst. Chief Greg Colonna, Engine Captain Dominic Spada, 1st Lieutenant Rescue Squad Hank Waldron, Hook & Ladder Captain Erik Weber, Hose Rescue Captain and Ex-Chief Tom Holly, Hook & Ladder Lieutenant and Ex-Chief Pete Magerle. front row L-R; Hose Rescue Lieutenant Hugh O'Brien, Chief Dan McConnell, Rescue Captain Kate Kuntz, and 2nd Asst. Chief Jamie Magerle)
Firefighter of the Year Wayne Jeno pictured with the Chiefs
Rookie of the Year KC Anna pictured with the Chiefs
The Halesite Fire Department held its 113th Annual Installation of Officers on Saturday, April 26th at The Huntington Crescent Club.

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 - Kate Kuntz
Assistant Secretaries-Jessica Kitzen and Lucy Oppenheim
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 - Dominic 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 - Hank Waldron
Rescue Squad - 2nd Lieutenant - Jesse Sammis

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

Dennis Magerle - 55 yrs.
Dennis Troup - 45 yrs.
John Blanda - 40 yrs.
Pete Magerle - 35 yrs.
Craig Lanigan - 30 yrs.
Dan McConnell, Bill Mitchell, and Bob Waring - 25 yrs.

Each member recognized received a special pin denoting their years of service.


Halesite's Chief, Dan McConnell presented several awards during the ceremony. The "Spirit of Halesite" award is a relatively new award, and recognizes the loyalty and friendship of non-members towards the Halesite Fire Department. This year's recipient was Pam Robinson, who through her former position as the Huntington Patch editor, made the Halesite Fire Department visible to the community at large. Thanks to her interest in the department, the Patch was always the first media outlet to run stories about alarms, fundraisers, and about the members themselves. Through the visibility Pam afforded Halesite by way of the Huntington Patch, we were able to increase our presence in our community which, in part, has helped us grow our membership to record levels.

Halesite's level 3 Special Recognition pin was given to Sarah Apgar, who made it her mission in 2013 to keep us physically fit so we can safely perform our duties as first responders. As the Department's Fitness Committee Chairperson, she organized twice weekly group workouts, created a running team which participated at several local runs, increased the use of our gym by advocating for more equipment, and invented and tested a firefighter fitness device now being used at the FDNY Fire Academy.

Chief McConnell recognized KC Anna as the Rookie of the Year. KC, a new member, had a stand-out year in 2013. He responded to essentially every other call in Halesite last year. In total KC logged over 487 hours in 2013; the most of any member. He completed his Firefighter I training and EMT certification in the same year, and in addition, he possess an attitude that is an example for all new members to follow.

Halesite's Rescue Person of the Year award was given to Brad Gaito. Although Brad has only been a member for a few years, he already is one of the busiest responders in Halesite. Last year he stepped up big time with his work involving the Rescue Squad. In 2013 he responded to over 100 fire and 100 rescue calls. He is a go to person whenever there are groups coming to the firehouse for safety talks and last year visited many local schools as an ambassador for the Halesite Fire Department.

Chief McConnell presented Halesite's Firefighter of the Year award to Wayne Jeno, also a relatively new member. During the year Wayne responded to 47% of all fire calls and logged over 380 hours of service to the community. But it's not only the statistics that are important. Wayne's attitude serves as an example for others to follow. He is passionate about training and is among the first to step forward whenever a job needs to be done. He was also a tremendous asset in several fires Halesite responded to last 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 His Boy Elroy.




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