In mid-February, a Town crew was working to re-board and secure an abandoned nuisance property on Earl Street in Deer Park when they smelled smoke. Joe Memet, Lou Bernard and Nick DeMaio, all members of the mason crew within the Buildings & Grounds Division of our Department of Public Works, along with Ed Buturla, Deputy Commissioner of Environmental Control, quickly noticed that there was a fire in the rear yard of the neighboring home.
The group sprang into action filling their buckets with water, hoping the fence to try and extinguish the fire all while alerting and assisting those who were inside the home at the time with evacuating. The crew was able to successfully stop the fire from spreading to the home before the Deer Park Volunteer Fire Department arrived. The majority of damage was confined to the grass, fencing and a small portion of siding on the home.
Supervisor Rich Schaffer, Councilman and Public Safety Chairman Terence McSweeney and the Town Board recently honored these four employees by presenting them with the Town’s Heroism Award, which is the Town's highest honor. “These men were in the right place at the right time,” said Councilman and active FDNY firefighter Terence McSweeney. “When you look at the photos, you can tell that, that home was only a few seconds away from going up in flames and it was the quick action of these four Town employees that helped prevent tragedy for this family,” he added.