Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Vigilant Fire Company Honors Departed Members with Apparatus Dedication

Contact: Josh Forst, Chief                                                                                                          FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Telephone: 516-487-1086          
Email: jforst@gnfd.org

Website: www.vigilantfd.com


Vigilant Fire Company Honors Departed Members with Apparatus Dedication



Great Neck Plaza, NY - Sunday, June 26, 2016, outside of the Vigilant Fire house, under the blazing early summer sun, the members of the Vigilant Fire Company joined together to dedicate Engine 8314 in memory of Warren “Doc” Hecht and Tower Ladder 8324 in memory of Chief Clarence “Larry” Fischer.




Chief Josh Forst who led the dedication said of Doc Hecht, it’s fitting that we honor Doc’s memory with this dedication as he always was one of the first members on the engine ready to respond. A true leader among the members, Doc would compete with the younger members to arrive first at the firehouse during a fire call. He believed that the Vigilant Fire Company was about being there for one another, whatever the need was that arose, truly community service oriented. His wife Gilda with their 4 children Honey, Ricki, Steve, and Mora represented Doc’s memory and shared in the dedication.



Of Chief Fischer, Chief Forst said, “Larry Fischer joined the Vigilant Fire Company in 1957. He was the model Chief and someone I wish I had around to speak with based on things I have heard about him. Sadly, I never got to meet him.” Chief Fischer was an officer during some of the largest fires ever seen in Great Neck. Certainly a Tower Ladder would have been used at most if not all of them. Therefore, the dedication of the Tower Ladder was made to him. “…he was a man who was always available to the membership, love speaking about fire department techniques, loved his family, played a mean game of pool, and made the best cup of coffee in town. Chief Fischer’s wife Joanne and daughter Sheila helped dedicate Tower Ladder 8324 to his memory.


The event was a great trip down memory lane for many of the members who have more than 3 decades of service and who rode with Chief Fischer and Doc Hecht. Hearing the stories of their harrowing acts for our newer members was inspiring. We hope that we will all carry the memories of these two impressive members every day when we ride on these pieces of apparatus.



The Vigilant Fire Company is an all volunteer fire company which provides fire and heavy rescue services to the villages of Great Neck Plaza, Kensington, Great Neck Estates, parts of Thomaston and the unincorporated area of the Town of North Hempstead on the Great Neck Peninsula.  The Vigilant Fire Company also provides all emergency medical services for the entire peninsula from the Long Island Railroad tracks north to the Long Island Sound.  Annually, the membership receives nearly 2,500 calls for emergency assistance.  To report a fire or medical emergency call 516-482-5000.  For other non-emergency questions call 516-487-1086 or email info@gnfd.org.

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Thursday, June 2, 2016

Vigilant Volunteers Extinguish House Fire

On Sunday, May 29, 2016, around 8:20 PM the Vigilant Fire Company was notified of a reported house fire in the Village of Great Neck Estates.  Immediately, upon the receipt of the initial phone call, First Assistant Chief, Josh Charry began responding from the fire house.  Upon arrival at the fire scene, about 1 mile from the fire house, Chief Charry transmitted the “Signal 10 – working fire”. On the transmission of the working fire, 2 engines and 1 ladder from the Alert Fire Company and a FAST team (firefighter assistance) from the Manhasset-Lakeville Fire Department were requested to respond mutual aid to the fire.



Moments later, Chief of Department Josh Forst arrived on scene and assumed command. Chief Forst reported that he had a large house with a fire on the first floor. Minutes after that, Engine 8314 driven by 2nd Lieutenant Oginski was on scene. A primary attack line was stretched from the engine to extinguish the first floor fire.  Quick work by Assistant Chief Charry, EMS Lieutenant Behnam, Engineer Ramsingh and Probationary firefighter Shavolian extinguished a great deal of the fire to reduce extension and damage to the rest of the home. The family was home at the time, their smoke alarm alerted them to the fire and they were able to remove themselves from the house quickly before the fire spread up the interior stairs.
Ladder 8312 driven by firefighter Monahemi arrived as an additional precautionary hand line was being stretched. Firefighter Monahemi at the direction of Chief Forst placed the aerial ladder into the attic window to ensure a safe egress for any members operating on the upper floor and effect rescue of civilians if necessary. Because of the large floor plan of the home a tremendous amount of smoke needed to be vented from the structure. While this took some extra time, the fire was placed under control about 1 hour after the initial alarm. There were no injuries reported to firefighters or civilians at the scene, however sadly, 2 domestic pets succumbed to the smoke and toxins in the home. The Nassau County Fire Marshal determined that the fire was unfortunately caused by an overloaded electric strip running among other things a portable air conditioner.




All units were back in service just after midnight on Monday. And the dedicated volunteers were ready for the 2016 Memorial Day Parade in the morning.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

VIGILANT MEMBERSHIP ELECTS FIRST FIRE COMPANY EMS CHIEF IN NASSAU HISTORY

Contact: Josh Forst, Chief                                                                                                          FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Telephone: 516-487-1086          
Email: jforst@gnfd.org


VIGILANT MEMBERSHIP ELECTS FIRST FIRE COMPANY EMS CHIEF IN NASSAU HISTORY

Great Neck Plaza, NY – January 20, 2016 – On Monday, January 4, 2016, the Great Neck Vigilant Engine & Hook & Ladder company held a historic election as we elected Steven Blocker First Assistant EMS Chief. Chief Blocker is the first EMS Chief elected in Nassau County who was not part of a Volunteer Ambulance Corp. When asked, Chief of Department, Joshua Forst said, “This is not the first time that the Vigilant’s have been at the forefront in making change in Nassau County and I am proud of Chief Blocker and excited to work with him.


 ex-Chief and Trustee Robert Lincoln executing the oath of office to 1st Assistant EMS Chief Block, Captain Shapiro, 1st Lieutenant Cohen and 2nd Lieutenant Behnam

Chief Blocker is both a paramedic and firefighter who has held multiple EMS roles prior to this election and has received numerous awards over the years for his service to the community as a member of the Vigilant Fire Company. When asked, he said, “I am thrilled that the membership chose me to be the first ever EMS Assistant Chief. This change proves our level of commitment to the residents of Great Neck and I look forward to working with the members to improve both response and training.”

Also elected were EMS Captain Steven Shapiro, a paramedic who is returning to the role of EMS Captain, having served in the position before, EMS First Lieutenant, Tamir Cohen, and EMS Second Lieutenant Daniel Behnam both Emergency Medical Technicians.


1st Assistant EMS Chief Blocker, Captain Shapiro, 1st Lieutenant Cohen and 2nd Lieutenant Behnam on the back step of the Vigilant Fire Company's newest Ambulance.

The Vigilant Fire Company is an all volunteer fire company which provides fire and heavy rescue services to the villages of Great Neck Plaza, Kensington, Great Neck Estates, parts of Thomaston and the unincorporated area of the Town of North Hempstead on the Great Neck Peninsula.  The Vigilant Fire Company also provides all emergency medical services for the entire peninsula from the Long Island Railroad tracks north to the Long Island Sound.  Annually, the membership receives nearly 2,500 calls for emergency assistance.  To report a fire or medical emergency call 516-482-5000.  For other non-emergency questions call 516-487-1086 or email info@gnfd.org.

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Monday, September 7, 2015

Vigilant Firefighters and EMTs Revive Soccer Player at Memorial Field

Contact: Josh Forst, Chief                                                         FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Telephone: 516-487-1086              
Email: jforst@gnfd.org

Vigilant Firefighters and EMTs Revive Soccer Player at Memorial Field

Great Neck, NY – September 7, 2015 – Shortly after 6:15 pm on Saturday, September 5, 2015, Vigilant Fire Company Probationary Firefighter Edwin Kokhabi was at Memorial Field on Fairview Avenue in Great Neck playing basketball with friends when he heard a woman screaming for anyone who knew CPR. Having learned CPR just two weeks earlier as part of his initial training, Kokhabi didn’t hesitate and ran over to help. When he arrived on the soccer field he found a fourty-six year old male lying face down. Feeling no pulse, Kokhabi’s instincts took over and he started giving chest compressions until the Nassau County Police arrived and took over from him.

At 6:21, the Vigilant Fire Company was officially notified for a male in cardiac arrest. Three minutes later, Vigilant Paramedic, Steven Blocker arrived, confirmed a patient in cardiac arrest, and immediately started advanced care. The ambulance was two minutes behind Blocker with additional personnel and First Assistant Chief Joshua Charry, another Paramedic was on scene shortly thereafter. Blocker, Charry, and the other members of the Vigilant Fire Company spent the next 15 minutes working in the middle of the soccer field shocking the patient’s heart four times before a pulse returned. They then transported the patient to North Shore Hospital in Manhasset where he is currently hospitalized in critical but stable condition.

When asked about his instincts, Kokhabi stated, “I just did what Firefighter Daniel Behnam taught me to do in training. It wasn’t just me, it was the Police Officers, the other members and Paramedics Charry and Blocker who did most of the work. They deserve the credit.” Upon hearing the story, Vigilant Chief, Joshua Forst said, “This event goes to show that any member of the community can join the Fire Company and make a difference immediately. Despite only being a member of the Fire Company for a month, Probationary Firefighter Kokhabi showed the type of instincts of a seasoned veteran member. Our members spend countless hours training for these moments and I am proud that Probationary Firefighter Kokahbi was able to positively affect the outcome by using his training.”

The Vigilant Fire Company is an all volunteer fire company which provides fire and heavy rescue services to the villages of Great Neck Plaza, Kensington, Great Neck Estates, parts of Thomaston and the unincorporated area of the Town of North Hempstead on the Great Neck Peninsula.  The Vigilant Fire Company also provides all emergency medical services for the entire peninsula from the Long Island Railroad tracks north to the Long Island Sound.  Annually, the membership receives nearly 2,500 calls for emergency assistance.  To report a fire or medical emergency call 516-482-5000.  For other non-emergency questions call 516-487-1086 or email info@gnfd.org.

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Monday, July 27, 2015

NUMEROUS RESCUE AGENCIES WORK TO FREE TRAPPED RESIDENT IN GREAT NECK

Vigilant Engine & Hook & Ladder Co., Inc.
83 Cutter Mill Road Great Neck, NY  11021
Bus. (516) 487-1086
                                                               Fax  (516) 487-7216
                             Fire  (516) 482-5000








                                            FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Josh Forst, Chief             
Telephone: 516-487-1086
Email: jforst@gnfd.org


NUMEROUS RESCUE AGENCIES WORK TO FREE TRAPPED RESIDENT IN GREAT NECK

Great Neck, NY – July 27, 2015 – Just after midnight, as most were sleeping soundly in their beds the dedicated volunteer members of the Vigilant Fire Company responded to a call for a person trapped in her bedroom under a tree that had fallen on her house. Vigilant EMS members responded and Vigilant Tower Ladder 8324 was “special called” to the scene to assist with size up and removal of the tree.




In addition to the fire department personnel from the Great Neck Vigilant and Alert Fire Companies on scene, Nassau County Police Emergency Service Unit personnel, and Emergency Ambulance Bureau technicians worked together the Nassau County Tactical Rescue Team and the Nassau County Fire Marshal's HazMat Team. The extrication took nearly 2 hours as members of the TRT worked to shore up the approximately 5000 lbs. fallen limb and help EMS members treat and remove the patient who was transported by Vigilant Ambulance 832 to a nearby hospital in stable condition. Vigilant Chief Josh Forst said, “It was a great example of how five different entities can work closely together and get one job accomplished.”




From 10 PM on July 26 until this call at midnight the Vigilant Fire Company responded to four calls for emergency help. A relatively busy night capped off with a very serious call for help.

The Vigilant Fire Company is an all-volunteer fire company which provides fire and heavy rescue services to the villages of Great Neck Plaza, Kensington, Great Neck Estates, parts of Thomaston and the unincorporated area of the Town of North Hempstead on the Great Neck Peninsula.  The Vigilant Fire Company also provides all emergency medical services for the entire peninsula from the Long Island Railroad tracks north to the Long Island Sound.  Annually, the membership receives nearly 2,500 calls for emergency assistance.  To report a fire or medical emergency call 516-482-5000.  For other non-emergency questions call 516-487-1086 or email info@gnfd.org.

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Thursday, July 9, 2015

VIGILANT FIREFIGHTERS PRESENT 2015 IELPI SCHOLARSHIPS

Text Box:  Vigilant Engine & Hook & Ladder Co., Inc.
83 Cutter Mill Road l Great Neck, NY  11021         
Bus. (516) 487-1086
Fax  (516) 487-7216
Fire  (516) 482-5000


Contact: Joshua Forst, Chief                                                     FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Telephone: 516-487-1086
Email: jforst@gnfd.org


VIGILANT FIREFIGHTERS PRESENT 2015 IELPI SCHOLARSHIPS

Great Neck Plaza, NY – July 7, 2015 – Annually, the Vigilant Fire Company awards scholarships to students from Great Neck North and Great Neck South High Schools who have demonstrated exemplary volunteerism. The awards, named for Vigilant Chief Jonathan Ielpi who was killed on September 11, 2001, are given to graduating seniors who like Jon did, show a true commitment to community and service.

This year, Chief Joshua Forst, accompanied by Jon's mother Anne and Sisters Anne Marie and Melissa, were pleased to present the Jonathan L. Ielpi Scholarship to Probationary members Yalda Shamash and Aaron Ratner. Both Yalda and Aaron have given countless hours to the Vigilant Fire Company and the Great Neck community. Yalda will attend City University of New York in September and Aaron has chosen to attend the University of Delaware. “We are very proud of our members and lucky to count them among our ranks. Thank you for your service and for carrying on the legacy of our departed friend.” Said Joshua Forst, Chief of Department.





The Vigilant Fire Company is an all volunteer fire company which provides fire and heavy rescue services to the villages of Great Neck Plaza, Kensington, Great Neck Estates, and parts of Thomaston and the unincorporated area of the Town of North Hempstead on the Great Neck Peninsula.  The Vigilant Fire Company also provides all emergency medical services for the entire peninsula from the Long Island Railroad tracks north to the Long Island Sound.  Annually, the membership receives nearly 2,500 calls for emergency assistance.  To report a fire or medical emergency call 516-482-5000.  For other non-emergency questions call 516-487-1086 or email info@gnfd.org.

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Friday, July 3, 2015

VIGILANT FIREFIGHTERS RESCUE WOMAN WHO FALLS FROM TRAIN TO TRACK BELOW

Contact: Josh Forst, Chief                                                         FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Telephone: 516-487-1086             
Email: jforst@gnfd.org

 Great Neck Plaza, NY – July 2, 2015 – Just before 5:45 PM tonight, as many prepared for the July 4th holiday weekend the dedicated volunteer members of the Vigilant Fire Company responded to a call for a woman who had fallen from a Long Island Railroad Train to the track below.

Upon arrival, Chief Joshua Forst found a 74 year-old woman under the train platform who had fallen while disembarking at the Great Neck Station. The patient was calm and complaining of minor injuries. While Chief Forst worked with the LIRR Movement Bureau and the MTA Police Department to ensure that power was off to the 750 volt 3rd rail and coordinate the rescue effort, the volunteer members descended to the track below to assess and extricate the injured woman. Second Assistant Chief Justin Sachmechi, Second Lieutenant Joseph Oginski, and Nassau County Police Department Emergency Ambulance Bureau Paramedic Matthew Gordon found the patient was conscious, alert, and had minor injuries. Their challenge would be extricating her from the tight space and removing her without further injury.

Within 35 minutes, the crew of three had secured the patient and were able to slide her under the train and lift her back onto the train and remove her from the original platform where she had intended to alight. The patient was transported in stable condition to North Shore Hospital in Manhasset for evaluation.

While this was happening, the Vigilant Fire Company also responded to a 14 year-old suffering from a seizure in Saddle Rock Estates, and a Carbon Monoxide Detector activation in the Village of Great Neck Estates.

The Vigilant Fire Company is an all volunteer fire company which provides fire and heavy rescue services to the villages of Great Neck Plaza, Kensington, Great Neck Estates, parts of Thomaston and the unincorporated area of the Town of North Hempstead on the Great Neck Peninsula.  The Vigilant Fire Company also provides all emergency medical services for the entire peninsula from the Long Island Railroad tracks north to the Long Island Sound.  Annually, the membership receives nearly 2,500 calls for emergency assistance.  To report a fire or medical emergency call 516-482-5000.  For other non-emergency questions call 516-487-1086 or email info@gnfd.org.

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Like the Vigilant Fire Company on Facebook at facebook.com/vigilanfd or follow them at twitter.com/gnvfdchief