The fire service can be challenging, as well as rewarding. I believe that no matter how long you are a member (and I have been a member since 1968), you can never say, "I have seen it all!" While many alarms are routine, eventually you use your training and skills to cope with a situation that you have not encountered before.
Roger Ketcham
Department Treasurer,
Hose Rescue Co.

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Huntington Town Fire Chief's Council Installation

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Ryan Sammis with the Chief's Council Board of Officers
Town of Huntington Chief's Council Board of Officers with Chiefs of Departments
Chief Dan McConnell with Ryan Sammis and Bonnie Sammis
Story and Photos by Steve Silverman (originally published in the March 2015 Fire News)


The Town of Huntington Fire Chiefs' Council recently held their annual installation dinner at the Huntington Crescent Club.

U.S. Congressman Steve Israel administered the oath of office to the Executive Board members who are: President John McKenna of Northport Fire Department, First Vice President John McDonough of Northport, Second Vice President Dan McConnell of Halesite, Secretary David Mohr of Huntington Community First Aid Squad, and Treasurer Gary Hontz of Eatons Neck.

Outgoing President Scott Waryold of Greenlawn was acknowledged for his dedicated service and leadership as President for the last two years, and received a plaque from the council.

The Chief of the Year award was presented to Chiefs William Stio and Alan Berkowitz of Dix Hills. They were recognized for their quick and lifesaving actions at the Elwood Cinemas on July 5, 2014. Chief Berkowitz arrived on the scene within seconds of dispatch and found a man in cardiac arrest. He immediately began CPR and emergency medical treatment, and was assisted by Chief Stio and the rescue crew in successfully reviving the patient.

The Chief Todd Sammis Memorial Firefighter of the Year award was presented to Firefighter Matthew Monahan of Commack, and Firefighter Ryan Sammis of Halesite.

On March 8, 2014, Firefighter Monahan came upon the scene of a motor vehicle accident with an overturned car on fire, and a victim trapped within. Without the benefit of protective gear or extrication, Monahan was able to extricate the young woman just moments before the vehicle became fully involved in fire. The patient spent three weeks in the hospital recovering from multiple injuries, and was able to be present at the dinner with her parents.

On May 19, 2014, Firefighter Sammis responded to a report of a motor vehicle accident where a vehicle came to rest in the tidal waters of Huntington. He observed the vehicle rapidly sinking and the driver clinging to the harbor bulkhead. Without the benefit of personal protective equipment, Sammis entered the water and was able to restrain the victim and hold his head above water until other responders arrived. Sammis then made several dives down to the vehicle to be sure no one else was within.

The Chief Todd Sammis Award is named after Chief Todd Sammis of the Halesite Fire Department. In March of 1987, Chief Sammis and Chief Frank Grasso rescued a person from the icy waters of Huntington Bay. Both men were recognized by the Huntington Chiefs' Council for their heroic efforts. Chief Sammis died in office following a tragic accident shortly after being elected. In 1988, the Chiefs' Council established the valor award in his name. Award recipient Ryan Sammis is the son of Chief Todd Sammis.




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