March 16, 2011

A Memorial Plaque to honor Captain Stephen Cospelich will be dedicated on Wednesday, March 16, 2011 at 1100 hours. The ceremony will take place at Firefighter Local 22 Union Hall at 5th and Willows Streets.

Captain Stephen Cospelich joined the Philadelphia Fire Department October 21, 1985. After Fire School, Steve was assigned to Engine 73; but, during his career he was assigned to several stations throughout the city. Steve enjoyed staying busy, so it was no surprise to learn that he was especially happy while working in North Philly at Ladder 14.

Captain Cospelich earned his promotion to Lieutenant in 1999 from Ladder 14 and was assigned to Ladder 18 at Hunting Park and Erie Aves. He eventually went to Ladder 8 in the Germantown section of the city.

Steve was the first Firefighter to be awarded a posthumous promotion. He was promoted to Captain.

April 21, 2011 - HOSEMAN GEORGE SHULTZ MEMORIAL PLAQUE DEDICATION - A Memorial Plaque to honor Hoseman George Shultz will be dedicated on April 21, 2011 at 1100 hours. The ceremony will take place at Engine 55’s Station at Front and Luzerne Streets.

Hoseman Shultz served as a Ladderman at Ladder 7 from June 1918 until November 1919 when he transferred to Engine 55. On October 30, 1924 Engine 55 was dispatched to a box alarm on Box 1326 at 2nd and Bristol Streets. While fighting a fire at the Bird Archer’s Chemical Company, Hoseman George Shultz was accidently struck by a hose pipe. Hoseman Shultz was rushed to the hospital with trauma injuries. He died two weeks later on November 14, 1924 from the injuries received on the Bird Archer fireground.

April 15, 2011 -  B.A.F.F.Y. BUNNY SPRING FIRE PREVENTION CONTEST - This contest is open to all children six to twelve years of age who reside in the city of Philadelphia. The entry forms will contain a word search puzzle with terms related to fire safety.
Entry forms will be distributed by company officers to all local schools, and will be available at the fire stations for any visitors who qualify. The contest will close on Friday, April 1, 2011.
The drawing will be random and held on Friday, April 15, 2011. The winner will receive a $200.00 cash prize.
Click for entry form.

The official rules for the “B.A.F.F.Y. Bunny Spring Fire Prevention Contest” are as follows:

1. The contest is open to all Philadelphia residents between the ages of 6 and 12.
2. Contestants will be required to correctly complete the “B.A.F.F.Y. 2011 Puzzle.”
3. Entry forms can be mailed directly to the Fire Prevention Division, Fire Administration Building, 240 Spring Garden Street, Philadelphia, Pa. 19123 or turned in to the local fire company.
4. All entries must contain the child’s name, address, telephone number, age and school with the address.
5. All entries become the property of the Philadelphia Fire Department.
6. The winner will be selected from correct entries on Friday, April 15, 2011 by a random drawing and be awarded a cash prize of $200.00.
7. The winner will be notified by phone.


On Wednesday, May 4, 2011, the City of Philadelphia will join with the Police, Park Police, and Fire Department to honor all members of these three departments who have been killed in the line of duty.Mayor Nutter, the Fire Commissioner, and Police Commissioner will be in attendance at this ceremony dedicated to those who have given the fullest measure of service to the city at the Fallen Firefighters and Police Officers Memorial which is located at the NEC of 6th and Arch Streets.

May 6 and may 14, 2011 - The S.E.P.A. 4th Annual Southeastern Pennsylvania (SEPA) Fallen Firefighters Memorial Golf Tournament will be held on May 6th, 2011. This event will benefit the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation (NFFF). The NFFF is a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization, located in Emmitsburg, Maryland, and registered as a corporation in the State of Maryland. Donations from individuals, organizations, corporations, and foundations fund many of the NFFF programs. A grant from the Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Assistance and a September 11 recovery grant from the American Red Cross Liberty Disaster Relief Fund supports programs for survivors and coworkers of firefighters killed in the line of duty. In the previous three years, this outing raised over $32,000 dollars for the NFFF, and in 2010, all events nationwide raised over $310,000 in support of the families and coworkers of our fallen heroes. The Golf event is being held at the John F. Byrne Golf Course, in Philadelphia, PA. Registration begins at 8:00 AM, with a shotgun start at 10:00 AM.

The second event this year will be held on May 14, 2011 from 4 PM - 8 PM. It is the “Second Annual Local 22 IAFF Firefighter Survivors Benefit Concert” featuring live music from Split Decision and Saturn as well as music from Clarke & Company DJ’S. KYW’s Michelle Durham will serve as this year’s Master of Ceremonies for the concert. The concert will be held at Maggie’s Waterfront Café, 9242 N. Delaware Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19114. All proceeds from this event benefit the Local 22 Widow’s Fund. In addition, golf plan information and registration as well as concert information or ticket purchase may be found at http://golf.firehero.org/pa/philadelphia.

May 10, 2011 - "FIRE SERVICE PARAMEDIC OF THE YEAR" - This year’s recipient of the "Fire Service Paramedic of the Year" Award is Fire Service Paramedic Patrick J. Carey. The Philadelphia Fire Department’s Historical Corporation's Board of Directors sponsors this annual award. This year's award is presented for dedicated service and superior performance in the line of duty.

MAY 15 - 21, 2011 – EMS Week - The Philadelphia Fire Department recognizes National Emergency Medical Services (EMS) Week, May 15 to 21, 2011. This year's theme is "EMS: EVERYDAY HEROES."

May 19, 2011: “EMS Appreciation” event will take place on the patio of the Fire Administration Building. Philadelphia citizens will share many of the “Thank You” letters the PFD has received for the high quality EMS appreciated by public.

Mayor’s EMS Proclamation: Fire Commissioner Ayers will read the EMS Proclamation and recognize the service of Emergency Medical Services to the public.

May 18, 2011 – MEMORIAL PLAQUE DEDICATION TO FIREFIGHTER - A Memorial Plaque to honor Firefighter Harry Henz will be dedicated on May 18, 2011 at 1100 hours. The ceremony will take place at Engine 33’s Station at Richmond and Kirkbride Streets.

On May 23, 1986 Engine 33 was dispatched 2nd-in on a tactical box. Fireman Harry Henz was the assigned driver of Engine 33. While responding to this call, Firefighter Henz felt something was wrong; and, he had the presence of mind to pull over and stop the Engine. As Firefighter Henz stepped out of the Engine, he collapsed and suffered a massive heart attack. The firefighters of Engine 33 started CPR, and Harry was transported by Medic 2 to the hospital where he was pronounced dead. Even in this time of personal pain, Firefighter Harry Henz had the presence of mind to take the appropriate actions in order to safeguard the men he worked with and the citizens he served. Harry left 4 children, 1 brother, 2 sisters, and 6 grand children behind.

May 20, 2011 - Awards Day Ceremony The Twenty-Sixth Annual Awards Day Ceremony will be held on Friday, May 20, 2011 at the Philadelphia Fire Training Academy. Six (6) department members will receive an award for Heroism; also one (1) civilian will receive a Heroism Award. One (1) department member will receive a Merit Award. Forty nine (49) units will receive a Unit Citation. One (1) civilian will be presented with a Letter of Commendation. Two (2) civilians will be presented Letters of Appreciation. The Albert H. Redles Memorial Award will be presented to a company that has distinguished itself through its community outreach efforts

AWARD - ALBERT H. REDLES MEMORIAL COMMUNITY OUTREACH Through our Community Outreach Program, each engine and ladder company has become an integral part of our fire prevention efforts. As the name implies, our fire companies become an active visible part of the community they serve. As such, firefighters and the Department are seen in a positive light during non-emergency situations and our life saving message is delivered on a more personal neighbor-to-neighbor basis. Starting in 1991, an annual award has been presented to the company that distinguishes itself through their year-long community outreach efforts.

The Department is extremely proud to have the Germantown Lions Club sponsor this award - the Albert H. Redles Memorial Community Outreach Award. Certainly no name could be more fitting than that of Al Redles which was synonymous with Philadelphia's nationally recognized fire prevention program for so many years. This Award will be presented to a company that has distinguished itself through its community outreach.

June 4, 2011 - Third Annual Badges of Honor 5K 2011 Badges of Honor 5K - The Badges of Honor 5K Run has been established to strengthen the relationship between Philadelphia’s Public Safety employees and the community they serve. The proceeds raised from the run defray expenses related to the death of an employee that has fallen in the line of duty. Flyer.

June 3, 2011 - GRADUATION OF 29TH FIRE SERVICE PARAMEDIC CLASS - A graduation ceremony for the 29. Fire Service Paramedic Class will be held at the Philadelphia Fire Academy.

June 3, 2011 – Promotions Ceremony. The Fire Department will promote fourteen (14) Firefighters to the rank of Fire Lieutenant. One (1) Fire Paramedic Lieutenant will be promoted to the rank of Fire Paramedic Captain. In addition, seven (7) Fire Lieutenants will be promoted to the rank of Fire Captain and six (6) Fire Captains will be promoted to the rank of Battalion Chief.

June 10, 2011 - Engine 38 Ground Breaking Ceremony - A ground breaking ceremony to celebrate the beginning of construction of Engine 38 will be held on Friday, June 10, 2011 @1030 hours. The ceremony will take place at Engine 38’s new site at 4931 Magee Avenue. In 2009, the City’s Department of Public Property and Fire Department were faced with the need to replace Engine Company #38 station in the Tacony section of the City. This was because the existing station located adjacent to Interstate Route 95 was to be demolished to make way for new access ramps as part of the I-95 Cottman Avenue interchange improvements.

June 19 - 25, 2011: FIRE/EMS SAFETY, HEALTH, AND SURVIVAL WEEK- In partnership with the International Association of Fire Chiefs and the International Association of Firefighters, the Philadelphia Fire Department will observe Safety Week 2011 starting June 19 and ending June 25. Throughout the week, companies are to focus on safety, health, and wellness-related training and education. Safety Week 2011’s “Surviving the Fire Ground. Fire Fighter, Fire Officer and Command Preparedness” theme will cover a variety of topics that are extremely important to all members of the Philadelphia Fire Department. The program will assist members with implementing awareness training on different topics related to survival on the fire ground.

June 15, 2011 – June 17, 2011 - 2011 FIRE PREVENTION SEMINAR XLIII - The Forty-Third Annual Fire Prevention Seminar, sponsored by the Philadelphia Fire Department and the Citizens' for Fire Prevention Committee, will be held at the Radisson Hotel 2400 Old Lincoln Highway, Trevose, PA 19053, beginning at 0830 hours on Wednesday, June 15, 2011 and closing at 1200 hours on Friday, June 17, 2011.
Representatives from Fire Departments and private industries throughout the region will be attending the seminar. To pay online, visit:  http://www.freedomfromfire.com/id23.html. For more information, click here.


June 29, 2011 - The 7th Annual Firemen’s Widows’ Fund Charity Softball Game The game will be between the members of Engine 55’s station and employees of Channel 6 Action News. The game will start at 6:30 PM at Edison High School field, Front and Luzerne Streets. There will be food, refreshments, and fun for everyone. All monetary donations and proceeds raised during the game will go directly to the Philadelphia Fire Department Widows’ Fund.

July 20, 2011 - MEMORIAL PLAQUE DEDICATION TO FIREFIGHTER ELMER CLOTHIER - A Memorial Plaque to honor Firefighter Elmer Clothier will be dedicated on July 20, 2011 at 1100 hours. The ceremony will take place at Engine 7’s Station, Castor and Kensington Avenues.

On July 20, 1968, while working at Engine 7, Firefighter Elmer Clothier collapsed at the fire house dying from a heart attack while on duty. Firefighter Clothier was a 21 year veteran of the Philadelphia Fire Department who also served in the U.S. Army in World War II. He was survived by his wife and daughter. He also had a predeceased daughter.

July - August - Drama Contest, Department of Parks and Recreation - During the months of July and August, the Fire Department in cooperation with the Department of Parks and Recreation will conduct a "Drama Contest." The contest consists of children from recreation facilities throughout the city performing in one-act plays, which tell of the values of a year-round awareness of fire prevention and safety.

The objective of the contest is to involve and encourage children toward an ongoing concern about the principles of fire safety.  This concept will help to enrich the child's natural creativity and help them to better express themselves throughout their lives.

August 17, 2011 - MEMORIAL PLAQUE DEDICATION TO FIREFIGHTER LEONARD GARRETT - A Memorial Plaque to honor Firefighter Leonard Garratt was dedicated on August 17, 2011 at 1100 hours. The ceremony took place at Engine 44’s Station at 3420 Haverford Avenue.

At 6:15 am, March 19, 1955, Engine 44, responded to a local alarm at 3716 Aspen Street with Ladder 6 and Battalion 11. The fire was located in the rear shed of a two story brick dwelling. Engine 44 extinguished the fire with 1” handheld hoselines. After the fire was extinguished, the companies were removing debris and doing overhaul operations when Firefighter Garratt collapsed. He was rushed to Presbyterian Hospital where he was pronounced DOA at 6:50 a.m.


A Memorial Plaque to honor Firefighter Tracy Champion was dedicated on September 14, 2011 at 1100 hours. The ceremony took place at Engine 54’s Station at 63rd Street and Lancaster Avenue.

On Saturday January 28, 2006 at 2:31 AM, Engine 54 was dispatched to Box 1233, at 55th Street and Lancaster Avenue. Upon arrival they found a dwelling heavily involved in fire. Once on location, the Incident Commander placed all hands in service. At 3:04 AM, the fire was placed under control. Around 4:30 AM, Firefighter Tracy Champion, while still under heavy smoke conditions was engaged in wet down and overhaul operations, collapsed on the fire ground. A medic unit was dispatched to the fireground where fellow Firefighters were administering CPR to Firefighter Champion. He was transported to Lankeneau Hospital where further resuscitation by hospital staff failed, and he passed away at 5:25 AM.

Firefighter Champion was 49 years old and a 21 year veteran of the Philadelphia Fire Department. He was the 285th member of the department to make the ultimate sacrifice since its founding in 1871.

September 17, 2011 – THRILL SHOW

September 24, 2011 - 2011 HERO THRILL SHOW - The 2011 Hero Thrill Show will be held at the Wells Fargo Center, Broad and Pattison, on Saturday, September 24, 2011 from 1200 to 1700 hours. The Firefighters’ Spectacular and Police Motorcycle Drill Team will be the highlights of the show.

The Thrill Show is a family fun day with rides, games, radio and television personalities, sport celebrities and several types of entertainment. There are two types of tickets:
1) an individual ticket which costs $10.00
2) a family pack ticket which costs $25.00 and covers 2 adults and three children (no more than three children), with children under the age of two being admitted for free.

The Hero Thrill Show was established in order to provide college scholarships for children of Philadelphia Firefighters and Police Officers killed or permanently disabled in the line of duty. You may purchase tickets at your local Philadelphia fire stations.

September 26, 2011 - ESSAY CONTEST (CITY-WIDE) begins

The City-Wide Essay Contest, co-sponsored by Saint Joseph's University, is open to all 6th, 7th,and 8th grade pupils in Philadelphia's public, private, parochial, and charter schools.

Essays are required to be 250 words or less in length.  They should be composed around a fire prevention theme, usually provided in the contest rules.  Entries will be judged for fire safety thought and content, as well as neatness and originality.  The contest will begin on Monday, September 26, 2011

Teachers of each 6th, 7th, and 8th  grade classes will be requested to choose the best essay from their respective classes to submit.  They should place them in an envelope with the school's name, grade and classroom number on it, to be picked up by the local Fire Company at the close of the contest.  Each essay should have the name, home address, home phone number, school, and grade of the pupil on the back.

Essays selected by each teacher should be picked up from schools by local companies on Friday, October 28, 2011.  Each battalion will pick the three best essays.

Final judging will be completed by a panel of impartial judges from the fire/civilian population at Fire Headquarters.  The winners will be announced in December, at the completion of the final judging.

The first place winner will receive a trophy, Certificate of Merit, and $200.00 cash.  The winning school will hold the perpetual trophy for one year, with the winner's name engraved.  Second place is $150.00. Third place is $100.00, each with a trophy and a Certificate of Merit.

Each of the thirty semi-finalists will receive a small gift and a Certificate of Merit, to be delivered by the local company to their respective schools.

October 7, 2011 - Fortieth Annual Fire Prevention Dinner Dance

The Annual Fire Prevention Dinner Dance is the official kick-off of the Philadelphia Fire Department's Fire Prevention Week activities.  Traditionally a gala affair, the Dinner Dance is attended by members of the Fire Department, leaders from the business, civic and religious communities, elected officials, and media celebrities from all over Philadelphia.

One of the highlights of the evening is the presentation of the prestigious T. Seddon Duke Awards given in two categories; one to a civilian and one to a uniformed member who has distinguished himself/herself by their efforts in fire prevention activities above and beyond the call of duty.


This will be the forty-fourth year for these two awards, named in honor of T. Seddon Duke, a prominent Philadelphian known nationally for his dedication and commitment to fire safety, thereby earning him the title, "Mr. Fire Prevention." The awards are given annually by the Philadelphia Fire Department for outstanding work performed in the field of fire prevention and fire safety.  One award will be presented to the most deserving civilian and one award to the most deserving member of the Fire Department (uniformed forces) for their contribution to the fire prevention effort during the past year. Presentation of the awards will be made during the Fire Prevention Dinner Dance.


The Fire Code Officer of the Year Award, initiated in 2006, is an award which is given annually by the Philadelphia Fire Department to a uniformed member of the Department who in the past year has demonstrated outstanding service in promoting fire safety through inspections, programs and presentations based on the Philadelphia Fire Code.  The award will be presented to the most deserving member for his or her contribution to fire safety through the application of the city's fire code.  The award is named after the Deputy Chief of the Fire Code Unit for his long tenure in the unit and his significant contributions to upgrading the city's fire code.  The award will be given out at the Annual Fire Prevention Dinner Dance.

October 9 - 15, 2011 - Fire Prevention Week, Open House at Fire Stations

During Fire Prevention Week (October 9 through October 15, 2011), there will be open house at all fire stations between 1000 and 1600 hours.  At this time, companies will highlight their “Community Based Fire Prevention Activities” by welcoming visitors to their stations and discussing topics of particular interest and significance to that individual, family, or group.

October 12, 2011 - CITY WIDE HOME FIRE DRILL
On Wednesday, October 12, 2011, at 1930 hours the annual City Wide Home Fire Drill will be conducted.

October 12, 2011 - FIREFIGHTER OF THE YEAR AWARD - The 2011 “Firefighter of the Year” award will be presented to Firefighter Edward W. Verbitski, Squad 47. The Selection Committee from Fireman’s Hall chose Firefighter Edward W. Verbitski for his valiant efforts and dedicated service in affecting the rescue of a woman and an eight month old infant from the second floor of a burning building.

The Philadelphia Fire Department’s Historical Corporation Board of Directors sponsors this award. Firefighter Verbitski will receive this award on Wednesday, October 12, 2011.

October 19, 2011 - MEMORIAL PLAQUE DEDICATION TO FIREFIGHTER THOMAS DONAHUE - A Memorial Plaque to honor Firefighter Thomas Donahue will be dedicated on October 19, 2011 at 1100 hours. The ceremony will take place at Ladder 5’s Station at 711 South Broad Street.

On November 26, 1954, Fireman Thomas Donahue was assigned to Engine 1 which was dispatched to a Local Alarm at 1001 S. Bouvier Street. Upon arrival, Engine 1 found a fire in the cellar of an occupied dwelling. The members immediately initiated an interior attack on the fire. Battalion Chief James Davis, realizing the severity of the fire, struck out the box bringing additional companies to the scene to assist in controlling the stubborn fire. During this operation, Fireman Thomas Donahue collapsed. He was rushed to Graduate Hospital where he was pronounced dead.

Tom was survived by his wife and children. The Donahue tradition of public service has been carried on for the next two generations through his son and grandson. His son, Tom is a retired Philadelphia Firefighter and grandson, Tom, a Philadelphia Police Officer.

Nov. 4 - 6, 2011 “Change Your Clock – Change Your Battery” Fall Promotion

In conjunction with the time changes to and back from Eastern Standard time and to publicize the support of the Philadelphia Fire Department for this life-saving program, all fire companies will go door-to-door on a block in their local safety and education district with smoke alarms and fresh 9-volt batteries, offering to install smoke alarms and replace batteries for residents.