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Friday, September 28, 2018

Retirement Flyer for Pam Graham

Retirement Flyer for Robert E. Aycock

Loved One of PGFD Cancer LODD Firefighter Shares Her Story

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

Firefighter/Medic Captain Christopher Hill passed away on July 21, 2016, from cancer. His service included Fire/EMS Department Line of Duty Death and full military honors, as he served his Country with the United States Army. Chris left behind wife Jen, two children, a host of other family and friends, and a grieving Department.

The Maryland Worker’s Compensation Commission, based on the Firefighter Presumption Laws, determined Captain Hill’s illness to be fire service-related. The Fire Fighter Cancer Foundation, according to a study by the University of Cincinnati, states, “Firefighters face cancer rates substantially greater than most Americans. The specific cancers include Testicular cancer, Multiple Myeloma, Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, skin and brain cancer, Malignant Melanoma, Prostate, Colon, Leukemia, and skin and brain cancer”.

Jen Hill is devoting her experience with living through Chris’ diagnosis and illness and her grief for what she believes could make a difference in saving the lives of firefighters, as well as helping families to avoid what she endured. Jen has developed a program that will educate firefighters about the dangers of service-related cancers, emphasizing that properly cleaned gear and other preventative measures should be a way of life. She speaks candidly about the effects of losing a loved one and its overall impact on the family.

Jen recently held a one-hour presentation for the Prince George’s County Fire/EMS Department Career Recruit School #58. She hopes to expand the program to include other jurisdictions.

Jen Hill shares her emotional and motivating story with PGFD Recruit School #58  Jen is behind podium.
Note the image on the screen.  (PGFD File Photo)

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

PGFD Fire Prevention Open Houses

The latest statistics from the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) show that if you have a reported fire in your home, you are more likely to die today than you were a few decades ago. This startling statistic is behind this year’s Fire Prevention Week theme: Look. Listen. Learn. Be aware - fire can happen anywhere.™ Fire Prevention Week takes place October 7-13, 2018.

Through three simple calls-to-action, this year’s theme identifies basic but essential ways people can reduce their risk to fire and be prepared in the event of one:

  • Look for places fire can start
  • Listen for the sound of the smoke alarm
  • Learn two ways out of each room

“People take safety for granted and are not aware of the risk of fire,” said Lorraine Carli, NFPA vice president of Outreach and Advocacy. “Paying attention to your surroundings, looking for available exits in the event of a fire or other emergency, and taking the smoke alarm seriously if it sounds can make a potentially life-saving difference in a fire or other emergency situation.”

This year’s Fire Prevention Week messages apply to virtually all locations. However, NFPA continues to focus on home fire safety, as the majority of U.S. fire deaths (four out of five) occur at home each year. In fact, the fire death rate (per 1000 home fires reported to the fire department) was 10 percent higher in 2016 than in 1980.
“While we’ve made significant progress in preventing home fires from happening, these statistics show that there’s still much more work to do when it comes to teaching people how to protect themselves in the event of one, and why advance planning is so critically important,” said Carli.

“Look. Listen. Learn. Be aware – fire can happen anywhere.” works to remind the public that fires can and do still happen – at home, as well as other locations - and that there are basic but vitally important steps people can take to remain safe.

As the official sponsor of Fire Prevention Week for more than 90 years, NFPA works with local fire departments throughout North America to promote the campaign in their communities and reaches out to the public directly to encourage everyone to take action to be safe.

"I encourage all of our citizens and residents of all ages to visit one of the many Open Houses being held at Fire/EMS Stations throughout Prince George's County," said County Fire Chief Benjamin M. Barksdale.  "Be proactive with fire prevention."

Here is a list of Open Houses being held.  Additional events may be added to this list.

Saturday, October 6, 2018            
Riverdale VFD - Co. 807                                         1200 to 4:00 pm       
at Riverdale Park Day, 5801 Riverside Drive

Sunday, October 7, 2018               
Laurel VFD - Co. 810 - Cherry Lane                      1:00 pm to 4:00 pm       

Saturday, October 13, 2018          
Bowie VFD - Co. 839 - Annapolis Road                10:00 am to 3:00 pm

Sunday, October 14, 2018             
Branchville VFD - Co. 811 - Branchville Road      11:00 am to 3:00 pm

Saturday, October 20, 2018          
PGFD at Co. 830 - 68th Place and RT 450             1200 to 5:00 pm

Sunday, October 21, 2018             
Beltsville VFD – Co. 831- Prince George's Ave     1200 to 4:00 pm

Saturday, October 27, 2018          
Glenn Dale VFA – Co. 818 - Glenn Dale Blvd.        1200 to 4:00 pm

Monday, September 24, 2018

9-Year-Old is an Inspiration for PGFD and Belgium Firefighter - Making Lemonade from Lemons

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

Belgium Firefighter Johnny Beernaert and Angelina O'Steen at her lemonade stand at National Harbor on Saturday.  Angelina is battling Cystic fibrosis and raising funds for Children's National Medical Center.

The Prince George's County Fire/Emergency Medical Services Department is hosting 10 emergency services personnel from Belgium.  The Belgium Fire Observers arrived on September 17th and will spend 10 days with Firefighter/Medics around the County riding calls, living, eating and participating in the day to day activities.

This past Saturday many of the Belgium Fire Observers participated in exercises with the Department's Marine Unit at the National Harbor.  While there, crews encountered a young lady, Angelina O'Steen, selling lemonade and were intrigued by the 9-years's old story.

Angelina is 9 battling Cystic Fibrosis. She has been a patient numerous times over her short life at Children's National Medical Center (CNMC) from complications from the disease. She has been operating a lemonade stand at various locations in the Southern Maryland region raising money to donate the proceeds to the CNMC Pulmonary Clinic.

The plan is to present a check to CNMC pulmonary clinic the Tuesday after Thanksgiving this year. Angelina was extremely excited when she learned that a firefighter from Belgium came all the way to National Harbor just to try some of her now World Famous lemonade.  

Angelina with PGFD crew and Belgium Firefighter Johnny Beernaert on Saturday at National Harbor.

Sunday, September 23, 2018

US Senator Cardin to Visit College Park Volunteer Fire Department on Monday to Deliver Federal Grant Funds

SEPTEMBER 23, 2018
CONTACTS: TIM ZINK 410-962-4436/SUE WALITSKY 202-224-4524
TOMORROW: Cardin in College Park to Discuss National Politics with UMD Students, Present Major Grant to Volunteer Fire Department
MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 24, U.S. Senator Ben Cardin will be in College Park, Md., for two events. 
PLEASE NOTE: MEDIA may RSVP for either event HERE.
MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 24 at 11:00 AMSenator Cardin will be in College Park, Md., to serve as a guest lecturer in the University of Maryland School of Public Policy. The senator will outline his perspectives on several prominent national issues – including the Supreme Court nomination, health care policy and gun violence epidemic – and engage students in a discussion on how best to address them. The senator and students also are expected to exchange ideas on issues of major importance to Maryland communities, including ways to better counter the opioid addiction crisis, restore the Chesapeake Bay, combat hatred and intolerance, and promote the growth of the economy and small businesses statewide. 
WHAT:         Discussion with Students at University of Maryland
WHO:            U.S. Senator Ben Cardin
Dr. Elizabeth M. “Betty” Duke, Clinical Professor, School of Public Policy, University of Maryland
                Students of Public Policy, University of Maryland
WHEN:            Monday, September 24 at 11:00 AM
WHERE:        University of Maryland, Van Munching Hall, School of Public Policy Atrium, 7699 Mowatt Lane, College Park, MD 20742
Metered parking available in Mowatt Lane Garage. Additional directions and parking information. 
MONDAY, SEPTEMBER 24 at 12:15 PMSenator Cardin will visit the College Park Volunteer Fire Department to present federal grant awards totaling more than $475,000. The awards from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) include a more than $400,000 “Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response” (SAFER) grant for volunteer firefighter recruitment, enabling College Park VFD to initiate a response stipend program and a college tuition reimbursement program to recruit and retain new volunteers. The department also was awarded a more than $70,000 “Assistance to Firefighters Grant” to purchase and install two self-loading, power-assisted stretchers and stair chairs in the department’s ambulance units. 
WHAT:         Grant Presentation at College Park Volunteer Fire Department 
WHO:            U.S. Senator Ben Cardin
                Bill Corrigan, Chief, College Park Volunteer Fire Department
Benjamin M. Barksdale, Chief, Prince George’s Fire Department
Local Volunteer Firefighters and Elected Officials
WHEN:           Monday, September 24 at 12:15 PM
WHERE:        College Park VFD, 8115 Baltimore Ave., College Park, MD 20740