Sullivan County Democrat
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Democrat Photo by Ted Waddell

SUMMITVILLE FIRE DEPARTMENT President Duane Whitaker rings the bell specifically meant to remember the fallen firefighters of Sullivan County’s numerous volunteer fire companies. Many members of those departments attended the memorial service Tuesday in Summitville.

They'll Never Forget

By Ted Waddell
SUMMITVILLE — April 11, 2003 – The bell tolled 53 times the other night in honor of deceased members of the local fire service.
On Tuesday, April 8, the Sullivan County Volunteer Firefighters’ Association (SCVFA) held their 44th Annual Memorial Service.
This year, the memorial tribute was hosted by the Summitville Volunteer Fire Department.
Robert Vollano, chief of the local fire department, said in his welcoming address, “God bless our brother and sister firefighters. They may be gone but will never be forgotten. May they always be in our hearts.”
Second assistant chief Frank Doolittle Jr. read the SCVFA resolution, a testament that brought forth more than a few quiet tears from the uniformed ranks.
“Almighty God in his infinite wisdom has removed from our midst certain brother and sister firefighters, who like ourselves have been the protectors of life and property from the ravages of fire. . . . It is fitting that the noble sacrifice of these men and women in the welfare, promotion and activities of the volunteer fire service shall be a matter of permanent record of this association.”
As Captain Mark Wharton slowly read the names of the departed, 1st Lt. Jacki Konrad and firefighter Christine Wharton lit a row of candles in remembrance of their brothers and sisters in local firematics who are “gone but not forgotten.”
As the roll call of the departed members was read into history, company president Duane Whitaker signaled their last call to duty by ringing a highly polished memorial bell.
In the background, the somber tones of “Amazing Grace,” as played by NYS Police piper Terry Mullen, created a reflective mood – a chance for all to remember years of volunteer service contributed to their communities by recently deceased comrades.
The Sullivan County Volunteer Firefighters Association’s 44th Annual Memorial Service closed with a reading of the Fireman’s Prayer.
Pastor Randolph Yerkes performed the invocation and benediction.
Gone But Not Forgotten
The somber memorial service began with reading the names of four firefighters who passed away in 2001 after that year’s memorial service: Nick Houman of the Monticello Fire Department, and from the Yulan Fire Department, Richard “Dick” Doeinck, William T. Grady III and Edward Thomas Purcell Sr.
Deceased members of 2002: Beaverkill Valley Fire Company (Werner Kunze), Callicoon Fire Department (Michael Henke and John Wizemann), Hortonville Fire Department (William Dirie, William F. Fisher, Clinton F. Long and Gary G. Rosenberger), Jeffersonville Fire Department (Robert Mann), Kauneonga Lake Fire Department (James Barber), Liberty Fire Department (Edwin Chardavoyne, Pastor Robert Feist, Charles Anderson and Marvin Magid), Livingston Manor Fire Department (Harold J. Roberts, Donald W. Sturdevant, Anthony “Tony” Lackey, Chauncey E. Turk and Walter F. Weigand), Monticello Fire Department (Ralph Meyers, Don Crawford and Harold Reynolds).
In addition: Mountaindale Fire Department (Solomon Joseph Rothstein and Bernie Ross), Narrowsburg Fire Department (Ralph F. Brauser and Joseph M. Purcell), Neversink Fire Department (Fred A. Moore Sr. and George Marshall), Roscoe Hose Fire Company (William Davis), Rockland Hose Fire Company (Harry Barnes, Francis Tempel, Thomas McDoal, Raymond Pomeroy and John Nead), Rock Hill Fire Department (Dave Jaffe), White Lake Fire Department (Stanley Liese), White Sulphur Springs Fire Department (Dale Calkin, Charles Roth, Raymond Edwards, Donald Cox, Allison Worden and Martin Goldstein), Woodbourne Fire Department (William Finn and Leo Hartman), Wurtsboro Fire Department (Melissa Millspaugh), Youngsville Fire Department (William Danzer) and Yulan Fire Department (Elmer A. Getz, Oscar L. Sherman, Gustav T. Rantas and Reginald C. Walter).

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