1. #1
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    Default Nice Grab (literally)

    Boonton firefighters rescue woman who jumped in river

    By Peggy Wright, Daily Record

    BOONTON - Two town firefighters rescued a distraught woman who flung herself into the churning waters of the Rockaway River on Friday evening, after two sisters used an emergency river phone on the shoreline to summon help.

    The Riverphone system is a series of three phones around the banks of the river. Pushing the red button on a phone acts as a 911 summons and connects the caller to the Boonton Police Department. The five-year-old system was former Cub Scout Pack 201 leader Rocco Wall's idea, after 10-year-old Ricky Metzgar, a Cub Scout, slipped and drowned in the river on May 18, 1996.

    Cub Scouts and other volunteers dug a huge trench and raised money for the police call box system to be installed and maintained. The system last year was turned over to the care of the Boonton Fire Department.

    Fire Chief Jim Wendt and his brother and fellow firefighter, Carl Wendt, were first on the scene with their ropes and rescue gear after Cindy Tserkis and her sister used a river phone at Grace Lord Park at 6:12 p.m. on Friday to report seeing a woman throw herself into the water from a ledge 15 to 20 feet above the river.

    When the Wendts and police arrived, they found that the 45-year-old woman had traveled about a quarter-mile down the river and had gotten jammed against a pile of jagged rocks in a section known as Arch Bridge, the fire chief said.

    With officers on shore holding onto ropes around the firefighters' bodies, the brothers went into the water - about 5 feet deep where the woman was wedged - and managed to bring her back to shore. Jim Wendt said the river narrows significantly at the Arch Bridge section and rapids make it especially dangerous.

    "The river chokes up there. The velocity of the water is very dangerous," the fire chief said.

    Wall was thrilled that the river phones were used to help save the suicidal woman's life.

    "This is just great news," Wall said.

    "All I can say is you have to be proud of the Scouts for it. And it's great to have firemen who get the job done."

    Boonton Firefighter George Johnson also assisted on shore, as did Boonton Police Officers Rich Vnencak, Brian Walinski and Joe Pensado, the fire chief said.

    The woman was transported after the rescue to St. Clare's Hospital/Denville for a psychiatric evaluation, authorities said.

    "There was nothing done out there that was out of the ordinary. We were just the first guys there," said Jim Wendt. He said he was grateful that the call boxes were in place so police could respond quickly. In the case of the child who drowned in 1996, his friend ran six blocks home to get help.

  2. #2
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    Thumbs up

    Any relation George?
    Buckle Up, Slow Down, Arrive Alive
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    thnxk mtn...........that was my question too.......
    IACOJ both divisions and PROUD OF IT !
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    Originally posted by mtnfireguy
    Any relation George?
    Ya think?

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    Originally posted by GeorgeWendtCFI


    Ya think?
    Brother?

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    Excellent work!

    I bet those Cub Scouts who were involved in getting the emergency phones installed are walking a little bit taller today.

    Good story George.
    FTM-PTB-DTRT

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    Originally posted by firenresq77


    Brother?
    Yup, both of them.

    For the record, I can't hold a candle to either one of them.

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    A great big [size=huge]tip o' the leather[/size] to the Wendt brothers for a job well done!

    George...I hope you didn't hold a candle...what they needed were towels and dry clothes! LOL
    ‎"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."
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    George I had read that yesterday. I was going to post it but you beat me to it. I was just talking to Jim the other day. He order a bunch of battieres from me. Sounds like if was a great job by all!
    This space for rent

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    Thumbs up The Wendt family tree

    George...you can't be related to those wonderful friends of mine....Carl and Jen. Known them for ages and ages. Jen was on my crew...until she got married.

    Small world...
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    Talking I Don't Think That's a Good Idea.......

    Originally posted by GeorgeWendtCFI


    Yup, both of them.

    For the record, I can't hold a candle to either one of them.
    Best not be holding a (lit) candle to anyone George, Arson, you know............

    That was one quick and successful operation, from all reports. My Congrats to All.
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    Thats my fater and my uncle. I hope to be able to follow in their footsteps soon!

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    Interesting thread brought back to life ....

    Welcome aboard, Jim.
    September 11th - Never Forget

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    Oh my god they keep multiplying!!!

    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    We can't have that many being right all the time around here......

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    Its the Bob's worst nightmare!!!
    Even the burger-flippers at McDonald's probably have some McWackers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JIMWENDT303 View Post
    Thats my fater and my uncle. I hope to be able to follow in their footsteps soon!
    First of all, yes. He is real. He is a great kid.

    Jim, just don't become a nasty cranky bozo like me.
    PROUD, HONORED AND HUMBLED RECIPIENT OF THE PURPLE HYDRANT AWARD - 10/2007.

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    Though I have never met George, (or Jim for that matter) I have known Carl for well over 10 years, and can say that he is one of the best firefighters I have ever known. He is currently a company Captain in a large, metropolitan fire department, and anyone assigned under his command should consider themselves lucky. I would be proud to call him my Skipper, and would pull a deuce and a half through the gates of hell with him any day of the week and twice on Sundays.

    Well done, Carl and Jim!

    And Little Jim- With your Uncle George's Integrity, your Uncle Carl's experience, and your Father's guidance and experience, I couldnt think of a better family to break into this business with.
    Last edited by FWDbuff; 04-20-2008 at 06:23 PM.
    "Loyalty Above all Else. Except Honor."

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    Well George you won't get many arguements about the nasty and cranky, but you are definitely not a bozo. My congratultions to your brothers for a job well done



    Quote Originally Posted by GeorgeWendtCFI View Post
    First of all, yes. He is real. He is a great kid.

    Jim, just don't become a nasty cranky bozo like me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CaptainGonzo View Post
    A great big [size=huge]tip o' the leather[/size] to the Wendt brothers for a job well done!

    George...I hope you didn't hold a candle...what they needed were towels and dry clothes! LOL

    Dittos,CaptainGonzo.Congrats to the brethren and sistren involved in the rescue.
    We also had a man overboard at work the other day.It's lucky when you get them out of the water.You don't always have a favorable outcome when this happens.

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    Way to guys!
    Jason Knecht
    Assistant Chief
    Altoona Fire Dept.
    Altoona, WI

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