Hempstead Town Supervisor Anthony J. Santino honored 55 first responders from across the township for their outstanding service during the Town of Hempstead’s 2016 Firematic Awards ceremony. The first responders represented 14 fire departments from throughout the Town of Hempstead during a ceremony held at the Nathan L. H. Bennett Pavilion at Hempstead Town Hall.
“Tonight, we honor some of the local heroes who put their lives on the line to serve their communities,” said Supervisor Santino. “I am proud to present Hempstead Town’s bravest with our Firematic Award in recognition of their heroic and selfless acts.”
First responders from Baldwin, East Meadow, East Rockaway, Elmont, Inwood, Island Park, Lakeview, Lynbrook, Mineola, North Merrick, Rockville Centre, Stewart Manor, Uniondale, and Woodmere were recognized for exemplary service to their fellow neighbors and their communities. Some were recognized for heroic rescues and courageous deeds, while others were saluted for decades of service to their respective departments and communities.
“It is humbling to recognize these first responders for their bravery, heroism, dedication and commitment in serving and protecting this great township,” concluded Santino. “Thanks to their selflessness and dedication, Hempstead Town remains a safe community in which to live, work and raise a family.”
2016 Town of Hempstead Firematic Award Recipients
Baldwin Fire Department: Ex-Captain Thomas Ryley
- Baldwin Fire Department Ex-Captain and NYPD Officer Thomas Ryley has the highest response rate in the department and also is a leader of various committees and training programs, while also being a dedicated husband, father and community leader.
East Meadow Fire Department: Chief John McGee, Assistant Chief Philip Fertita, Fire Medic Alba Dougherty, Fire Medic Phyllis Sperr and Fire Medic Ashley Vecchione
- This team of first responders successfully administered Narcan to an unresponsive victim to save her life from a drug overdose.
East Rockaway Fire Department: Lieutenant James Monaco, Firefighter Andrew Ochtera, Ex-Chief Edward Reicherter
- In April, this team of first responders saved the life of a person who was trapped in a burning Ocean Avenue apartment.
Elmont Fire Department: Captain Mike Santina
- Over a 27-year volunteer career, Santina spearheaded training and preparation for new and experienced firefighters. Throughout his time with the Elmont Fire Department, he has been honored on several occasions, including recognition for saving the life of a baby in a house fire.
Inwood Fire Department: 1st Assistant Chief Anthony Rivelli Jr.
Island Park Fire Department:Ex-Captain Danny Cardineu, Island Park Ex-Captain Anthony Ciccimarro, Ex-Chief Robert Dexter Jr., Firefighter Matt Graci, Fire Medic Alan Greenfield, Firefighter Tayron Hardwar, Firefighter Ricky Holodar, Ex-Chief Edward Madden, 1st Assistant Chief James Miotto, Firefighter Stephen Nurnberger, Firefighter Ronald Nurnberger, Jr., Firefighter Luis Quilca, Ex-Captain Margarita Rodriguez, Firefighter Edward Schaefer, Firefighter Michael Spina, Ex-Captain Jenna Thilman, Probationary Firefighter CJ Vandermosten, Ex-Captain Charles Vandermosten, Ex-Captain Russell Waters, 2nd Assistant Chief Michael Whalen and Firefighter William Whaley
- A team of first responders from Island Park Fire Department and Inwood Fire Department contributed to the dramatic rescue of two men who were trapped in a vehicle that drove into the water off Island Park. The volunteers rushed to action to save a passenger who was trapped in the submerged vehicle.
Lakeview Fire Department: Ex-Chief Frederick Senti III
- Senti III followed in the footsteps of his father, grandfather, and sister, serving as Fire Chief for the Lakeview FD. He has served for more than a decade and was an important leader during the department’s response to Superstorm Sandy.
Lynbrook Fire Department/NCPD EMS:Chief John Chavatte, Lieutenant James DiGiambattisa, Captain Cory Hirsch and 3rd Deputy Chief Nicholas Pearsall of the Lynbrook Fire Department Police Medic Larry Loiselle of the NCPD EMS
- The team of Chief John Chavatte, Lieutenant James DiGiambattisa, Captain Cory Hirsch, 3rd Deputy Chief Nicholas Pearsall of the Lynbrook Fire Department and Nassau County Police Medic Larry Loiselle rescued a woman in cardiac arrest on Sunrise Highway in Lynbrook.
Mineola Fire Department: Honorary Captain Donald Franz
- Franz has served in the Mineola Fire Department for over 47 years and is a U.S. Navy Veteran. He has won multiple Firefighter of Year awards for his bravery and is known for being an advocate for sick and injured firefighters in his department.
North Merrick Fire Department:Ex-Chief James Allen and Firefighter Robert Goohs
- This dynamic duo went into an extremely dangerous fire in the basement of a home where a victim was trapped. Without a hose, they were able to rescue the victim and get him to medical care for severe smoke inhalation.
Rockville Centre Fire Department:Paramedic Christopher Bossart, Firefighter Patrick Corrigan, Lieutenant Andrew Hodges, EMT Pierre Hourani, Lieutenant Neil Kirschen, MD, Firefighter Daniel Navarino, Firefighter Edward Oppenheimer and Captain Kevin Creegan
- This team of brave first responders helped revive a dad who suffered cardiac arrest while watching his daughter at a dance recital at South Side Middle School. The team used CPR and an AED device and transported him to a local hospital, where he was treated and released.
Stewart Manor Fire Department: Ex-Captain John Powell
- Powell, a 10-year member of the Stewart Manor Fire Department, leads training of his fellow firefighters and coordinates several activities and committees. He has earned top honors in his Fire Department, including the SMFD “Dutcher Award.”
Uniondale Fire Department: Firefighter Martin Anderson, EMS Member Konica Devasser, Ex-Chief Darnell Eason, Ex-Chief John Skelly
- When a fellow firefighter and his family lost everything in a house fire, these four Uniondale FD members responded by setting up a fundraiser Comedy Night and raised thousands of dollars to help the family get back on its feet.
Woodmere Fire Department:Firefighter Michael Sauer
- Michael is a 20-year fire department member and has built a firefighting legacy within his family. He chairs the fundraising committee and spearheads an array of important initiatives at the department.