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Volunteer Firefighter

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NEWS
January 5, 2001 | By Richard V. Sabatini, INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
For 15 years, volunteer firefighter Chris Russell has battled blazes and helped fire victims recover after their losses. Yesterday, Russell, his wife and three children lost everything when fire swept through the Fairless Hills ranch home they had been renting. The 7:41 a.m. blaze was blamed on a clothes dryer in the rear room of the first floor, Falls Fire Marshal Ed Copper said. "Just what occurred, we don't know yet. But it definitely was caused by the dryer, which had been running," Copper said.
NEWS
January 24, 1992 | By Bryon Kurzenabe, SPECIAL TO THE INQUIRER
A volunteer firefighter accused of heading an arson ring that terrorized Burlington County's river towns for almost a year pleaded guilty yesterday to setting 15 fires that ravaged homes, stores and factories and resulted in more than $2 million in property damage. Chris Hatcher, 28, of the 400 block of Bridgeboro Street in Riverside, said in Burlington County Superior Court that he instigated the string of blazes in March, 1990, shortly after he and two friends joined Delanco's Washington Fire Company.
NEWS
February 12, 1999 | By Herb Drill, INQUIRER SUBURBAN STAFF
Richard L. Gibb, 83, of Lower Makefield Township, a retired executive in the reinsurance field and a volunteer firefighter, died Monday at St. Mary Medical Center, Middletown Township. He retired in 1981 after many years with American Reinsurance Co., based in New York. A native of Brooklyn, N.Y., Mr. Gibb attended schools in the New York City area and graduated from Pace College in New York. He served in the Army as a chief warrant officer in the Panama Canal area during World War II. A 45-year resident of the Levittown/Lower Makefield area, he had been active with the Capitol View Fire Company, which serves Morrisville and Lower Makefield, and had been treasurer of the company's relief association.
NEWS
September 3, 1992 | By Josh Zimmer, INQUIRER CORRESPONDENT
Harold M. Smith, 93, who served for nearly six decades as a volunteer firefighter in Moorestown, died Tuesday at his home. "He loved the trucks, he loved the noise, the excitement," said Karl Shelley, the township's fire district commissioner. Mr. Smith had been the township's oldest volunteer firefighter, serving 59 years with the Relief Engine Company before kidney disease forced him to curtail his activities several years ago. He still remained on the company's active-member roster, however.
NEWS
March 1, 1987 | By Theresa Conroy, Special to The Inquirer
On Feb. 20, after 40 days of investigation and more than 2,000 hours of surveillance, Horsham Township police were confronted with a bizarre twist: Could a volunteer firefighter who had battled more blazes than any other in the township also be setting fires? Relying on a description provided by a witness to one of nine suspicious blazes, police began following Anthony McDonald, a 23-year-old volunteer firefighter for the Horsham Fire Company. Nine days ago shortly before 11 p.m., a police stakeout team parked an unmarked car outside a vacant barn on Babylon Road.
NEWS
May 2, 2015 | By Mari A. Schaefer, Inquirer Staff Writer
Prosecutors called the former firefighter the Pied Piper of his neighborhood, for the trail of children constantly following him. John Corcoran, 20, of Glenolden, bought the kids McDonald's meals and toys, let them use his hot tub, and took them swimming. But according to investigators, Corcoran was a serial child abuser. Pornography charges lodged against him in a recently unsealed federal indictment carry a maximum jail term of 610 years. In addition, he has been charged in two related Delaware County Court cases with sexual abuse of children and arson.
NEWS
May 28, 1987 | By S.E. Siebert, Special to The Inquirer
After 45 years as a volunteer for the Huntingdon Valley Fire Company, Frank Burkard has retired from the firehouse and has been awarded $25,000 by his fellow firefighters. Burkard, 73, was honored in a ceremony at the firehouse last week for his years of service to the Lower Moreland community. He is the first firefighter in Pennsylvania to receive money from the newly created Service Disability Fund. Craig Colbert, company president, said the company voted to give Burkard the award, using state money that was not needed to buy protective fire equipment.
NEWS
August 12, 2012 | By Walter F. Naedele, Inquirer Staff Writer
Thomas C. Elvins III, 88, a volunteer firefighter in his hometown of Hammonton, N.J., for more than 60 years, died Friday, July 27, at AtlantiCare Regional Medical Center in Atlantic City after being injured in a July 13 car accident in Egg Harbor Township. Mr. Elvins was born in Hammonton, graduated in 1941 from Hammonton High School, and worked on his father's fruit farm before serving in the Navy from 1942 to 1946, mostly as a shipboard turret gunner in the South Pacific. He was a member of Operating Engineers Local 825 for more than 60 years, driving bulldozers and road graders on jobs across South Jersey, his daughter, Bonnie Lou Petruzzo, said in an interview.
NEWS
June 5, 2014 | By Walter F. Naedele, Inquirer Staff Writer
  John J. Bauman Jr., 59, of Lindenwold, a volunteer fireman since he was 16, died of a heart attack on Sunday, June 1, at home. A 1972 graduate of Camden Catholic High School, Mr. Bauman had worked for the Pepsi Cola Bottling Co. in Pennsauken since 1978. Mr. Bauman was "first a driver and then in the production department," his wife, Patricia, said in a phone interview. Before going to Pepsi, she said, "he worked for Coca-Cola for a short period. " "I told him, if he worked for Coors or Budweiser, I would have loved him more," she said, with a laugh.
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NEWS
June 21, 2015 | By Erin McCarthy, Inquirer Staff Writer
Anthony Perno watched closely as Joshua George sprinkled tomatoes and mozzarella onto flatbread. George, a chef and dietitian, was manning the grill outside the Merchantville Fire Department, making the unusual pizzas for firefighters and their family members Friday as part of a Camden County and Cooper University Health Care program to promote healthy living among local first responders. About 75 percent of firefighters are obese, according to Cooper officials. Perno, 39, has been a volunteer firefighter with the Merchantville department for 13 years.
NEWS
May 2, 2015 | By Mari A. Schaefer, Inquirer Staff Writer
Prosecutors called the former firefighter the Pied Piper of his neighborhood, for the trail of children constantly following him. John Corcoran, 20, of Glenolden, bought the kids McDonald's meals and toys, let them use his hot tub, and took them swimming. But according to investigators, Corcoran was a serial child abuser. Pornography charges lodged against him in a recently unsealed federal indictment carry a maximum jail term of 610 years. In addition, he has been charged in two related Delaware County Court cases with sexual abuse of children and arson.
NEWS
April 2, 2015 | By Jessica Parks and Ben Finley, Inquirer Staff Writer
A former volunteer firefighter in Montgomery County held four fellow firefighters hostage at gunpoint Tuesday morning before being taken into custody, Cheltenham Township police said. Police Chief John Norris said Paul Jordan, 25, had been fired from the LaMott Fire Company in Elkins Park the day before. Jordan allegedly entered the unlocked fire station Tuesday morning with a 9mm handgun and held the other men hostage in the basement for about an hour before surrendering, police said.
NEWS
March 31, 2015 | BY WILLIAM BENDER, Daily News Staff Writer benderw@phillynews.com, 215-854-5255
EVERYONE HAS that friend or co-worker, the eternally grateful person who's just happy to be alive - and can make you feel the same way by their sheer proximity. For first responders in eastern Delaware County, that guy was 26-year-old Mark Hudson, a part-time police officer in Darby Borough for the past four years and a volunteer firefighter in Yeadon since he was a teenager. In fact, Hudson said as much on his Facebook page just two months ago. "Everyday above ground is a great day," Hudson wrote in a January status update that made its way around the Internet again yesterday.
NEWS
March 30, 2015 | By Chris Palmer, Inquirer Staff Writer
An off-duty Darby Borough police officer died Saturday night after being shot in his home in Darby Township, officials said. The officer was shot around 4:30 p.m., said Darby Borough Police Chief Robert Smythe. Richard Womack, Darby Township police commissioner, said the officer was shot once in the chest. Further details about the shooting were not immediately clear. Around 10:30 p.m., Womack said detectives were still investigating the scene, on the 600 block of Magnolia Avenue.
NEWS
January 25, 2015 | By Mari A. Schaefer, Inquirer Staff Writer
It was while they were investigating arson charges involving a former volunteer firefighter that Delaware County detectives learned of more disturbing allegations involving pornography, rape, sexual abuse, and the assaults of 14 children as young as 8. On Friday, District Attorney Jack Whelan announced the arrest of John P. Corcoran, 20, of Glenolden. He was charged with 161 counts of rape, sexual assault, indecent exposure, and related crimes from December 2012 to December 2014.
NEWS
August 14, 2014 | By Mari A. Schaefer, Inquirer Staff Writer
A 19-year-old Delaware County volunteer firefighter allegedly enlisted a juvenile in setting fire to three vacant homes - then responded with his fire company to put out two of them - police said. John P. Corcoran IV, 19, of Glenolden, is charged with arson, reckless burning or exploding, criminal mischief, corruption of minors, reckless endangering another person, and related crimes, according to court records. Corcoran, who volunteers for Goodwill Fire Company 77 in Darby Township, was remanded to the county jail after failing to post $250,000 bail.
NEWS
June 5, 2014 | By Walter F. Naedele, Inquirer Staff Writer
  John J. Bauman Jr., 59, of Lindenwold, a volunteer fireman since he was 16, died of a heart attack on Sunday, June 1, at home. A 1972 graduate of Camden Catholic High School, Mr. Bauman had worked for the Pepsi Cola Bottling Co. in Pennsauken since 1978. Mr. Bauman was "first a driver and then in the production department," his wife, Patricia, said in a phone interview. Before going to Pepsi, she said, "he worked for Coca-Cola for a short period. " "I told him, if he worked for Coors or Budweiser, I would have loved him more," she said, with a laugh.
NEWS
March 18, 2014 | By Angelo Fichera, Inquirer Staff Writer
PENNSAUKEN Mike Sammon stood in Pennsauken's Fire Station No. 4 on a recent afternoon as winter at last began yielding to spring. "I've been here half my life," Sammon, 46, said, a gold fire-rescue charm around his neck. "It's been home to me. " But as of March 31, the 89-year-old Delaware Gardens Volunteer Fire Company will close in an effort to increase efficiency and firefighter safety, officials say. Contributing in large part to the decision is a decline in fire volunteers, a national trend that has hit home for the station on 49th Street.
NEWS
October 4, 2013 | By Walter F. Naedele, Inquirer Staff Writer
When Thomas D. Kelly went on vacation, he didn't always take a vacation from his love of firefighting. From New England to New York state, "he would go to different fire companies," daughter Hope Kowalski said. "He would look at the different fire trucks," she said, or "just go in and talk to the firefighters. " On Monday, Sept. 30, Mr. Kelly, 69, of Burlington City, a former fire chief there, died of complications from diabetes at Virtua Memorial hospital in Mount Holly.
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