Thursday, April 30, 2009

Chief See Says Farewell to the Salisbury Fire Department

On Thursday, April 30, Chief David B. See left his office at the Salisbury Fire Department Administration Wing for the last time. Just outside the entrance of the Departments Heritage Center Museum, many of the rank and file of the department and most of his staff gathered to wish him farewell and good luck.

Standing in a well dressed line each of the Firefighters greeted Chief See as he extended his hand in friendship and thanks to each every member in attendance and briefly exchanged kind words with one and all. At the end of the line Deputy Chief Ricky Hoppes, (Named acting chief earlier today by Mayor Ireton) presented Chief See with an American Flag as a symbol of remembrance and thanks of his 30 years service with the city.

Chief See is not finished with the Fire Service however. He plans to remain as an active volunteer with the Delmar Fire Department and to remain active with the National Organizations he is associated with working for the betterment of Firefighters everywhere. Chief See's official retirement date is June 30th of this year but for the next 60 days he will be using his unused personal leave time.

Farewell Chief See!

We wish you the very best of luck in your retirement.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Salisbury Fire Department Medal Day, 2009

This morning under a beautiful sunshiny day the Salisbury Fire Department held it's 6th annual Medals Day Ceremony on the lawn of Station 16 on Cypress St. Unique to this this Medal Day Ceremony is that it was the first one to be attended by Salisbury's new Mayor Jim Ireton, the first one to be held at the new Station 16, and the last one to be attended by Chief David See as he will be retiring later this month.

Also in attendance for todays events were Mr. Richard Pollitt, County Executive, Mr. John Cannon, President of the Wicomico County Council, Ms. Louise Smith, President of the Salisbury City Council, Delegate Jim Mathias and a number of other dignitaries and honored guests. One very special guest to todays events was Mr. Robert Cannon, father to John Cannon. Mr. Bob, as he is affectionately known, has always been a great friend to the Salisbury Fire Department over the years and is always a most welcome guest to many events through out the year hosted by the SFD.
The Ocean City Pipe and Drum Corps opened the event today accompanied by the Salisbury Fire Department Color Guard presented the colors of our great county, State and City. Retired Chief of Operations Timothy Keenan emceed today's activities and following an opening prayer and moment of silence for our deceased members the awards for today's recipients were read and presented.
Included in today's awards were a Citizens Commendation, two Distinguished Service Awards, and several Unit Citation awards to members operating on Rescue 16, Paramedic 1, Assistant Chief 1, Car 2, Rescue/Engine 302, Squad 3, (Fruitland VFD) and Paramedic B-15 (Allen VFD).
At the conclusion of the award presentation the colors were retired by the color Guard and the Pipe & Drum Corps and the new Tower Ladder 16 was officially dedicated and housed in the Station. All in all it was a great day for the ceremony and for the attendees of event. Congratulations to all those receiving recognition today and congratulations to Chief See on the conclusion of a 30 year career.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Common Grounds Coffee House

Wednesday evening Common Grounds Coffee House celebrated Earth Day in a big way to a standing room only crowd. Beginning at 6:00 pm, coffee was on sale with 10% off and deserts were on sale @ 25% off.

Common Grounds, new to the city business roles is the only fair trade organic coffee house I am aware of locally, and let me assure you the java there is simply great. Along with coffee they serve up a variety of teas and all sorts of soft drinks made in house. Quite a variety of deserts are available for the sweet tooth and the carb fix
for that morning breakfast snack on the run.

I arrived a little after six last night and had a short wait for my coffee and because all the chairs and tables were taken, one kind lady allowed me to use a corner of her table for my camera bag and was gracious enough to let me sit and chat for a few minutes before I left. I had an errand to run at another business and when I returned close to an hour later I could see there was still a crowd and everyone seemed to be enjoying themselves tremendously.

Entertainment was also on hand provided by
"Joyland Express", a string band playing some great bluegrass music. They certainly were a pleasure to listen to.

Common Ground will be on hand at the Salisbury Festival Block Party this Friday night and their booth will be near the Ramada Inn and again on Saturday on Main Street near the Chamber of Commerce building. Be sure to stop while at the festival and enjoy a great cup of coffee.

Common Ground is located @ 701-D Mill Pond Village Rd. Behind the Center of Salisbury in the Mill Pond Village Shopping Center. Their Grand opening will coming up soon and I'll keep you posted on that date. All the staff are pleasant and extremely helpful. Stop in in soon. I promise you won't go away dissatisfied!

Monday, April 13, 2009

Great Reading

When "Band of Brothers" by Steven Ambrose was released I bought a copy with every intention of reading it. As with a lot of the books I have bought they seem to get set aside and somewhat forgotten, but I always seem to find a reason and time to read them. "Band of Brothers" was made into a mini-series for HBO and like so many people I watched it faithfully until it's completion. The very last episode was very intriguing to me and served as the catalyst for me to search out the book from it's shelf, blow off the dust and began to read. The episode I refer to is when Major Winters speaks of the soldiers he served with and what happened to them after the war.
After finishing that book I signed on to, searched out and purchased "Beyond Band of Brothers" and "Biggest Brother" both books about Major Dick Winters. I have since watched "Band of Brothers" several times always seeming to pick up a little something new. Though these books were very interesting I felt there was more to be said of Easy Co. and it would come from other perspectives. A little research and digging proved this to be true.
I discovered and purchased the book "Call of Duty" by Lt. Lynn 'Buck' Compton, also of easy company and portrayed in the series by Neil McDonough. Lt.Compton writes of his entire life before, during and after WW II. It is a fascinating story and the book is an easy read. If there anyone who believes more in the American way I would certainly like to meet them.
I could say much more about this book but the real appreciation comes from reading it yourself. My copy will be passed on to my friend now serving in Afghanistan when he returns later this year. I urge everyone to obtain a copy either from the library or purchase one from many online services and take a day or two read it. As I said earlier, it is an easy read but the impact it has will last a lifetime.
It doesn't end there for me either. I recently ordered two more books written by members of Easy Co. Sgt Don Malarkey and Sgt Bill Guarnere both served with Major Winters and Lt Compton and have written their accounts of Easy Co. in Europe. I look forward to reading the events from a NCO's point of view.
So far all of the authors have expressed a common thought that is very striking. That being they are not unique to any of the troops serving in the operations highlighted in the HBO series or the books. You get the feeling that they are quite honored to bee named so prominently but they all tell the same story. They are a small part of a big picture, a part to be proud of for sure, but should never held to a higher degree of recognition that thousands of others in the same theater of war.
Read the book folks--it's well worth it.