Fire Department Tour: A Day To Remember

“06880” reader Sharon Maddern sent this letter to 1st Selectman Jim Marpe, Fire Chief Robert Yost and Deputy Fire Chief Brian Meadows. But it’s worth sharing with a much larger audience:

I’d like to let you know about an outstanding experience my son and I recently had visiting the Westport Fire Department, and what an impressive, dedicated and professional team they are.

My son Derek is 21. Though he has some disabilities, he is a huge firefighter fan. He listens to all the calls over the scanners, and follows them online. For him this was a super-exciting day.

With the help of Sal Liccione, who set up the visit, we arrived on a Saturday morning. I expected a basic 20-minute overview. But our guide, Lt. Jonathan Piper — a veteran fireman of 20-plus years — gave us an incredibly informative tour of the facility. Even I was enthralled by the advanced technology, and his extensive knowledge of all the sophisticated equipment.

He explained the various roles of the department beyond firefighting, including HazMat and emergency responses like pulling cars out of ditches.

We also got a firsthand look at the new fire engines.

Derek gets a close-up look at a Westport fire truck.

I cannot tell you how meaningful this was to my son, and how appreciative I am of the time Jon took with us. Even I could follow his articulate, enthusiastic and patient explanations!

While I have spent the last 17 years working in commercial real estate in Westport, I was never aware of the extent that the fire department and these men are involved in: all the day-to-day aspects of our safety, including road hazards, building inspections, alarm responses, etc.

I hope that the WFD continues to receive Westport’s respect and the funding that it deserves, as they have an enormous burden of responsibility. They are an invaluable part of the community, and should be generously supported in their endeavors to continue to provide such an efficient, effective resource for the town.

This was a day both my son and I will always remember. Our thanks go out to the WFD!

7 responses to “Fire Department Tour: A Day To Remember

  1. K .F. Spearen

    Seeing this just put a big Smile on my Face .. Big thanks to the WFD for being so Kind … Derek will Never forget this day .. Thanks for sharing Dan.

  2. Daniel Katz

    What a nice, important and moving expression of appreciation and recognition and what a caring and professional fire department we have.

  3. Adam Vengrow

    great writeup, not enough people talk about the positives and good things. Much like the Westport Police, Westport Fire gets looked at as an easy job and almost expendable. It is just the opposite. A lot of what makes this town great is the stuff that both organizations do behind the scenes, as well as their abilities to respond quickly and efficiently to anything that comes their way. Thanks for the story, we do have an incredibly great blanket of coverage in Westport.

  4. Nice story, way to go guys. Class move! These folks understand that being a civil servant extends beyond the core focus of the job.

  5. Hats off to Sal Liccione for setting this up. One of the true pleasures of serving on the RTM has been getting to know our police and fire departments – we are fortunate to have such dedicated men and women serve on our behalf. Nice story to start the day. Thanks!

  6. Wonderful story and I too have nothing but praise for the WFD. They responded quickly and were the first ones on the scene when my wife and I experienced medical emergencies.

    And here’s a way you can help them out (which we only learned about when we were in the process of moving and donating various items): they need cars for training, i.e., extinguishing car fires, helping free passengers who are trapped in an accident, etc. So, if you’re getting rid of an older car, please consider donating it to the WFD, which is what we did.

    PS Dan, I can’t believe you’re going to have the best weather ever for the first “06880” party we wil be missing

    • Sharon Maddern

      Thanks so much Dan for getting my letter out there and giving the WFD the recognition they deserve. Hats off!