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WFD Honors Its Firefighters And Members

‘Medal of Honor’ awarded to Bloomfield and Chowske

In ceremonies held on Oct. 1, the Wantagh Fire Department (WFD) recognized and honored several of its members for acts of heroism and outstanding work.

The highest award, the “Medal of Honor” was presented to Ex-Captain Thomas Bloomfield and Ex-Captain Ron Chowske for their rescue of an unconscious 80-year-old man in a Wantagh house fire.

Several awards were presented for this same fire. Chief of Department William Allen and 2nd Assistant Chief James Bloomfield were awarded the “Exceptional Meritorious” for their actions in trying to get to the victim. Firefighter Frank Brown was awarded the “Meritorious” for his removal of the second victim, an 80-year old woman from the rear of the home. She suffered smoke inhalation.

In addition, two “Unit Citations” were presented. One was to Rescue 1 for their efforts in keeping the man alive as he was transported to the hospital. The crew consisted of Officer in Charge Mary Jampor, Driver Eric Paine, Firefighter/Medics Marcela Loeber, Susan Brodeur, Danielle Barretta, Marvin Berg, Steve Karewja and Kevin Hess.

The second “Unit Citation” went to Engine 8 for their excellent efforts in extinguishing the fire. The crew of Engine 8 consisted of Officer in Charge, Ex-Captain Ron Chowske, Ex-Captain Tom Bloomfield (both of who made the rescue), Driver/MPO, Ex-Captain Jay Cohen, Firefighters Nick Gizzi, Scott Towne and Ed McGuire.

A “Certificate of Merit” was presented to Ladies Auxiliary members Karen Gillen, Kim Keefer, Dee Bloomfield and Meagan Tung, who was 7 ½ months pregnant at the time. The day of the fire was in the high 90s with high humidity. The ladies provided water, electrolytes and cold wet towels as the firefighters exited the burning building.

The final presentation was an “Out of Town” award presented to Fire Medic Jay Rosenberg of Engine 5. He had been in a park in Bellerose, Queens when a call for help went out over the park’s speaker system. Rosenberg went to a ballfield where he teamed up with an off-duty nurse to save the life of an 80-year-old man who had suffered a heart attack. He was taken to the hospital by a FDNY ambulance, had a defibrillator implanted and is alive and well today.