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Friday, December 19, 2014

PGFD - Holiday Pet Safety

Consider donating to the Prince George's County Fire/EMS Department and SPCA Sparky Fire Fund.  This 501c3 Charitable contribution will be used when PGFD firefighters find a pet injured during a home fire.  If the pet owners can not afford emergency vet treatment or are not available than this fund will cover the immediate cost of emergency vet care.


If you have a special purpose for your donation, please let us know.
I want my donation to be designated toward:
Sparky Fire Fund
I want my donation to be dedicated:

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Passing of a Berwyn Heights Volunteer Life-Member and a Long-Time Partner and Best Friend

Lucinda "Cindy" Frend

The Berwyn Heights Volunteer Fire Department regrets to announce the passing of active member Lucinda H. Frend. Cindy was a Life Member with over 28 years of active service. Of those active years, she has served as the Secretary of our Department since 1988. Her dedication and commitment to the Berwyn Heights family will not be forgotten.

Many of my media associates and friends are familiar with Jim Davis, a freelance journalist and photographer.  Jim is a friend of mine and asked that I share his written thoughts about Cindy.  Davis wrote, “It is with my deepest regrets to inform you of the passing of my best friend, Cindy Frend.  Cindy, for the past 30 years I have loved, cared and lived with.  She was the person who I did everything with. Cindy lost her battle with cancer on Monday evening.”

Arrangements are as follows:

Fire Department members are encouraged to wear department uniforms.

Visitation, Friday, December 19th at 12:00 Noon.
A gathering of friends and family at the Kaufman Funeral Home Chapel at 12 noon on Friday December 19th. (7250 Washington Boulevard, Elkridge, MD 21075)

Funeral, Friday, December 19th at 1:00 PM
Immediately following the visitation at the Kaufman Funeral Home and Meadowridge Memorial Park. also located at 7250 Washington Boulevard, Elkridge, MD 21075

A Celebration of Life will be held immediately following the services at the Firemark Building Hall, 8684 Veterans Hwy, 4th Floor, Millersville, MD 21108.

Additional Fire Department Memorial Service, Saturday, January 3rd at 11:00 AM
In addition, the Berwyn Heights Volunteer Fire Department and Rescue Squad Inc. will be holding a Fire Department Memorial Service for Cindy on January 3rd, 2015. This service will be held at the Greenbelt Volunteer Fire Department (Co. 35) and will begin at 1100 hours. Additional information regarding Fire Department participation and attendance will be announced via Facebook and our Website.

The family has asked that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Berwyn Heights Volunteer Fire Department or the Hospice of the Chesapeake.

Questions regarding Fire Department participation or funeral information should be directed to Chief Danny McCoy at dmccoy@bhvfd14.org 301-741-8089.

Please keep the Frend family and Jim Davis in your thoughts and prayers.

Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Community Risk Reduction with Pathfinders and Adventurers

Media Contact: Mark E. Brady, Chief Spokesperson, 240-508-7930
mebrady@co.pg.md.us     @PGFDPIO

Deputy Fire Chief Neal B. Dennis and Firefighter/Medics recently had the opportunity to provide fire safety information to a group of young children.  The Calverton Fire/EMS Station provided the instruction and demonstration of the tools of the trade as well as tours of the fire and EMS units.  The young children participating in Pathfinders and Adventurers programs along with their teachers and chaperone's were certainly impressed and entertained.

Images captured by DEF N.B. Dennis

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Crew Assaulted and Ambulance Stolen Ends with Fatal Crash

MEDIA CONTACT: Mark E. Brady, Chief Spokesperson, 240-508-7930
mebrady@co.pg.md.us     @PGFDPIO

An ambulance crew was assaulted, their unit stolen and minutes later involved in a multi-vehicle crash involving a fatality.  At about 5:30 pm, Sunday, December 14, Ambulance 811B was returning to their station after completing a patient transport. 

As they were travelling southbound on the Capitol Beltway (Route 495) they witnessed a passenger car leave the roadway near the interchange of I-95.  The ambulance pulled to the shoulder with the crew of two firefighter/EMT’s exiting to check on the welfare of the occupant. 

A series of events occurred quickly with both crew-members being assaulted by the driver of the very car they stopped to help.  The suspect proceeded to drive away in their ambulance.  The volunteer firefighter/EMTs were visibly shaken but not injured.

The stolen ambulance proceeded south on Route 495 and exited onto Kenilworth Avenue and than west on Greenbelt Road.  Two blocks down Greenbelt Road and about 15 minutes after this incident started the stolen unit caused a multi-vehicle crash.  At least 3 vehicles on Greenbelt Road at 62nd Avenue in Greenbelt were damaged including a vehicle occupied by an adult male and female.  The adult male sustained critical injuries and succumbed shortly after arriving at a local hospital.  The adult female occupant was transported to a hospital with less serious injuries.

After striking the vehicle(s) on Greenbelt Road the ambulance careened down an embankment rolling onto its side while striking at least 7 unoccupied vehicles in the parking lot of a restaurant.

The now injured suspect was apprehended by police officers as he attempted to exit the unit.  The adult male suspect was transported, in custody, to a local hospital where police describe his injuries as “critical.”

A total of 11 vehicles were involved (including the ambulance).  Three people were transported from the scene (including the suspect in custody) and three people were treated or evaluated on the scene and did not go to the hospital.

The Prince George’s County Police Department will be conducting an investigation and accident reconstruction of the crash.  All details will be released by them when available.

The Branchville Volunteer Fire Company and Rescue Squad, Inc. in College Park own the ambulance.  Branchville is just one of nine all-volunteer stations out of 45 stations that operate within the Prince George’s County Fire/EMS Department.  The ambulance appears to be totaled with replacement costing about $250,000.  Branchville owns a second ambulance and has access to a County reserve ambulance if needed.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Volunteer Fire/EMS Company Plays Huge Role in Wreaths Across America This Weekend

MEDIA CONTACT: Mark E. Brady, Chief Spokesperson, 240-508-7930
mebrady@co.pg.md.us     @PGFDPIO

This Saturday, December 13, a convoy of tractor-trailers will arrive at Arlington National Cemetery.  The trucks have been travelling all week to reach Arlington to join with hundreds of volunteers that place Christmas Wreaths at gravesites of our fallen military.  This years Wreaths Across America event falls on the 150th Anniversary of Arlington National Cemetery.

This week of events is made possible by thousands of volunteers who organize local ceremonies, raise funds to sponsor wreaths, and participate in the events.  The cost of the programs is paid by individual wreaths sponsors, corporate donors and volunteer truckers. 

Have you ever thought about where dozens of tractor-trailers carrying thousands of wreaths stay the night before??  Where does this huge convoy start from??  Where do the hundreds of staff and drivers eat breakfast before making the final leg of their long journey??

A local volunteer fire department in Prince George’s County, Maryland plays a key role in assisting Wreaths Across America reach their final destination at Arlington National Cemetery.   The Branchville Volunteer Fire Company and Rescue Squad and their Ladies Auxiliary in College Park, MD, put in a weeks worth of work into a very short period of time to honor the staff and volunteers that honor our fallen heroes.

The all-volunteer fire company, for the eight consecutive year, will start to park dozens of Wreaths Across America tractor trailers and support vehicles on Friday, December 12.   The trucks are expected to arrive as early as 10:30 am on Friday.  Branchville Volunteer Firefighters will wash each truck as they pull in front of the fire station before positioning them in a large adjacent parking lot.  The process is really quite impressive.

Ronald Leizear Sr., President of the Branchville Volunteer Company, stated, "The membership looks forward to this event every year and participate willingly with a smile on their face.  We understand the mission of remembrance and honor of our fallen at Arlington National Cemetery and we are doing our small part to help make that happen."

For the fourth year the Branchville membership including the Ladies Auxiliary will provide breakfast to the staff and drivers.  This year over 400 people will be fed.  Volunteers will start prepping the meal at midnight Saturday.  Wreaths Across America staff starts to arrive at around 4:00 am to enjoy breakfast.  The fire station banquet hall becomes a very active place until around 7:30 – 7:45 am when the trucks start their process of lining up for an escorted trip from Branchville Fire/EMS Station to Arlington.

This event provides a very unique opportunity for media to talk with the primary participants and organizers of Wreaths Across America in a calm and quiet setting.  Several boxes of wreaths will be opened and on display Friday as they are stacked for distribution on Saturday morning at Arlington.  The breakfast provided by the Branchville Volunteers is truly an amazing effort and really cannot be put into words, you have to see it to believe it.

It is important to note that this event is for theWreaths Across America staff and volunteers associated with the convoy.  Volunteers that will place wreaths are still to meet at Arlington National Cemetery.

The following were images taken at the December 2012 event at Branchville.  This year, twice as many  staff and volunteers are expected to attend this years breakfast.