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Millbrook Hook & Ladder Co. No. 1 celebrates members with annual dinner

MILLBROOK — Millbrook Hook and Ladder Company No. 1 held its annual Firemen’s Awards Dinner on Saturday, Oct. 9, at the Village of Millbrook firehouse.

The event was catered by the Millbrook Deli, and the food was plentiful, delicious and varied. A greater number of awards was presented this year as some of the award recipients had outstanding years of service. Because of the COVID pandemic, the awards ceremony was not held  last year.

The invocation was given by the Rev. Thomas Fiet from Lyall Memorial Federated Church. Dutchess County Undersheriff and Acting Sheriff Kirk Imperati made opening remarks and underscored the importance of the volunteers who protect the residents, business owners and property of Dutchess County.

Millbrook Mayor Tim Collopy was not able to attend, but Deputy Mayor Mike Herzog filled in, thanking the fire department and Rescue Squad for all that they do for the village and town. He spoke of  the importance of volunteerism in small communities, noting that many of this nation’s forefathers, including Alexander Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson, were also volunteer firefighters.

Other dignitaries were on hand to give thanks and praise to those who serve in the Millbrook Hook and Ladder Co., including Dutchess County Executive Marc Molinaro and County Legislator Deirdre Houston (R-25).

The two county lawmakers also took the opportunity to talk about the upcoming budget, the needs of the county and of smaller municipalities like Millbrook and Washington and how to best meet those needs.

Houston is running for re-election in the County Legislature. Molinaro, whose term limit as county executive expires at year’s end, recently announced he is running against two-term U.S. Rep. Antonio Delgado (D-NY-19) for a congressional seat come Nov. 2.

Awards

A number of awards were handed out at the Oct. 9 Firemen’s Awards Dinner.

Awarded for 55 years of service was John V. Manzi Jr., who joined the department in August of 1965.

For 50 years of service Andrew Ciferri, Bill Manzi and Rich Cross were awarded.

Brian Hicks was awarded for 35 years of service.

Matt Rochfort was awarded for 30 years of service, 22 years of those years as president.

Kim Bownas was awarded for 30 years of service.

Tara Granger and Ken Walsh were awarded for 20 years of service.

Peggy Mulligan and Robin Horan were awarded for 10 years of service .

Tim Race was awarded for five years of service.

Allen Meyer was the recipient of the Augustine Rotunno Memorial Award for Lifetime Achievement. This award is given to a member who has made a positive impact in the overall mission of the Millbrook fire department. Meyer also celebrated 40 years of service.

The Lynn Karn Award recipient is chosen by the department’s membership in memory of Karn’s years of active service as a line officer and civil service. This year’s award was bestowed on Fire Chief Ted Bownas.

The Sean Kimble Rookie of the Year Award was presented to Jake Zampko, who joined in July 2020.

Leo Arruza received a Certificate for 25 Years of Life Membership and was given an Honorary Life Member Presentation.

The Auxiliary Awards went to Linda Wilbur for 40 years and to Loretta Koche for 25 years; the Life Member Award went to Jennifer Strang for 15 years.

Rochfort  gave special mention and a certificate of appreciation to Millbrook Deli and Pizza, which has catered this event for several years and has always done an excellent job, according to the chief.

The menu this year included appetizers, prime rib, fish and chicken, vegetables, salad, pasta, potatoes and carrot cake. Tables were set with sunflower arrangements and a bar.

The Rev. Matt Calkin of Grace Episcopal Church gave the benediction, along with his appreciation for the fire and rescue services. The dinner and awards were then over until next year, with everyone going home happy, full and thankful for the Millbrook’s emergency services and its volunteers.

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