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Letter: They Were There When We Needed Them

A good portion of recent network news has been about the one year anniversary of Hurricane Sandy. It is one  year later and so many NY/NJ residents are still waiting for promised relief from this  natural disaster.  Neighborhoods were destroyed, life as they knew it changed…forever.

Fortunately, the Village of Floral Park weathered the storm better than most of Long Island.  I vividly recall driving throughout the village and walking through the streets of the West End, where I witnessed extreme damage.  Our public services: fire, police and public works were  running, despite Village wide power outages in excess of a week and gas lines reminiscent of the 1973 gas shortage,.

Despite the property damage we came out ahead of the storm; the fire department responded to a record number of calls,I witnessed  a police patrol every two or three blocks, and Public Works was out in force as well.  

The Floral Park Fire Department is 100 percent volunteer and whether it is a blizzard or a hurricance, the department  goes on 24-hour stand-bys based on weather related emergencies.  Our fire department members leave their families in order stay in their stations to protect their neighbors at the most vulnerable times.

The police department works 12 hour tours, 24 hours a day, seven days a week; and longer in a public emergency situation.  The Department of Public Works often works extended shifts and is always just a phone call away which makes a huge difference in mitigating emergencies.

I am’ not trying to make a political statement, I  just want  to thank our dedicated public servants, who are often unrecognized,  for the job they do everyday.   Our public servants  make this Village of  Floral Park, the place we all chose to live.

We are always in need of volunteers so please consider paying it forward and becoming a Floral Park volunteer firefighter and EMT.  There is no expense involved and iIt will most likely be the most rewarding sacrifice you’ll ever make.  Teenagers 14-18 years of age are also welcomed into our Fire Explorer Program where you will be trained in basic firefighting and first aid (EMS) skills.  Call the chief’s office at 516-326-6327 for an application. Upon applying to a company (we have five) you’ll be interviewed at home with your family, where all details will be explained and all your questions will be answered.

V.J. Brooks

Ex-Fire Chief