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  1. #1
    Forum Member DeputyChiefGonzo's Avatar
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    Thumbs up Thanks Captain Mike!

    My son had to take a placement test today at UMass-Dartmouth, where he will be going to college in the fall. Since Dartmouth is just outside of the City of New Bedford, I sent an Email to Mike Gentili, the Captain of NBFD Engine 1 about a week ago and asked him if he would be working the day tour. He told me he was on vacation, but that he would meet me at Station 2 (NBFD HQ) for the 50 cent tour.

    The tour was priceless! The NBFD reeks of "tradition"! When I arrived, New Bedford Fire Alarm tapping out a box alarm for a possible hoouse fire. The sound of the house gong was like a symphony to my ears! I got to see the second oldest fire alarm office in the country in operation. The equipment dates back to the late 1890's and 1900's, but the brass bells of the fire alarm circuit tappers still gleam as if they were new. No computer aided dispatch there, they do things the old fashioned way with run cards for the street and master boxes. The signals are retransmitted from the NBFAO to the stations. They also tone out over the radio..the one concession to modern dispatching!

    After that, I got the tour of the Station and the apparatus there. Mike then took me around the city and its firehouses. All of them go back to the 1890's! We stopped by a few and then we drove by some recent fire scenes. New Bedford is an old whaling port and fishing city with a lot of conflagration potential. Seeing some of the fires that the NBFD stopped cold is a testament to their dedication, honor and tradition.

    Captain Mike Gentili is a well qualified to be a "Crusty Old Jake" and the NBFD also qualifies!
    Last edited by CaptainGonzo; 05-31-2002 at 02:37 PM.
    ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
    Lt. Ray McCormack, FDNY


  2. #2
    MembersZone Subscriber
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    I have gotten to know a couple of guys from down there from taking
    tech rescue classes. The guys are great. They are there for you
    for whatever you need, a real testament to brotherhood. Right you are
    Cap, this is one of the last cities holding on to the tradition.
    Wish there were more like them.
    "I have no ambition in this world but one, and that is to be a fireman. The position may, in the eyes of some, appear to be a lowly one; but we know the work which a fireman has to do believe that his is a noble calling."

    Edward F. Croker
    Chief 1899-1911
    Fire Dept. City of New York

    HOOK N' CAN of the I.A.C.O.J.

  3. #3
    Forum Member mfgentili's Avatar
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    Cool Finally a member

    Wow, it’s certainly an honor to be deemed a “Crusty Old Jake” by the president himself and I gladly accept the I.A.C.O.J. membership bestowed upon me personally by President Gonzo right out there on the station brow, in the shadow of NBFD headquarters, and in front of my E1 and visiting E7 (one of my old companies).
    To be perfectly honest, I was unaware of this new organization and its’ membership qualifications until just this week. After reading about it on FH.com, I thought of shooting in a post applying for membership but since I knew the prez would be in town I figured I would hold off till his visit. I figured what better way to be judged crusty than by personal observation. I even stripped and repainted my leather New Yorker just for the occasion and made sure to show it to his honor. I am also honored that Capt. Gonzo saw fit to qualify the NBFD as a “crusty” organization. Are we the first to be given that designation?

    On the serious side, I guess it is good to sometime get an outsider’s opinion about what we do and how we do it. It is easy to become complacent and not appreciate our own surroundings. We often complain about our 100+ year old stations and the shape they’re in. I hear humming about our old fire alarm bell system and questions about why we can’t join the rest of the modern world. Thanks Capt. Gonzo for showing me my department through someone else’s eyes. Now that I look at it, it really is pretty neat!
    It was certainly a pleasure having you here for those few hours and you are most welcome any time. I will also take you up on your offer for a visit to Marlboro country.
    Mike Gentili
    Captain, E1, NBFD

  4. #4
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    ......gulp....(tears in my eyes).......

    What a touching moment......

    In all seriousness...to of my favorite Captains in one place at the same time, and I didn't get invited.....

    Futhermore Mr President...I believe that the BMI is also tasked with maintaining your personal protective detail...and I would have been the closest agent........


    I spent some time in NB when I was growing up (my grandma lived there) many of my "early" memories of the fire service and much of why I wanted to do this came from watching the NBFD during those visits. Nice post Cap!

    Dave

  5. #5
    Senior Member Temptaker's Avatar
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    mfgentili

    Congradulations, and Welcome.

    Be sure to drop by the buffet table and sample some of superchefs FINE cooking.

    I think you might be the first dept to have the "crust" designation officially bestowed on you by our esteemed president, at least publicly.

  6. #6
    MembersZone Subscriber
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    hfd66truck- 24 miles from New Bedford. Could have done the detail with you brother!!!
    "I have no ambition in this world but one, and that is to be a fireman. The position may, in the eyes of some, appear to be a lowly one; but we know the work which a fireman has to do believe that his is a noble calling."

    Edward F. Croker
    Chief 1899-1911
    Fire Dept. City of New York

    HOOK N' CAN of the I.A.C.O.J.

  7. #7
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    Good call Puffy, you could have been the advance team...I have a little bit farther to travel.

    -------------------
    BMI........where mutts are a small squishy little bug that get caught under your windshield wiper while traveling at 70mph.

    We must protect our President!

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