Milton FD hosts annual inspection banquet

By Mark Reynolds
Posted 5/14/24

The Milton Engine Company No. 1 recently held their annual Inspection Banquet at the Locust Grove Brewing Company. 


Pastor David Stein, of the Lattingtown Baptist Church, …

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Milton FD hosts annual inspection banquet

The Milton Engine Company No. 1 recently held their annual Inspection Banquet at the Locust Grove Brewing Company. 
Pastor David Stein, of the Lattingtown Baptist Church, offered the invocation.
“Lord we thank you for another year of serving this community and for their service, each and every one of us here,” Pastor Stein said. “Lord we remember those who have gone before and in particular we lift up to you the family of Jimmy Santora (1943-2023) tonight. We ask that you surround them with your comfort, your grace and your peace. Lord, we commit this upcoming year to you for your safety, for your blessing and your hands to be upon them, for you to work in and through them.”
Pastor Stein paused and asked for a moment of silence, “for our brother James Santora, who answered his last call in 2023.”
Chief Stephen Rivieccio named his Line officers for the year: 1st Asst Chief Matt Kneeter, 2nd Asst. Chief Gael Appler Jr, 3rd Asst. Chief Adam Kneeter, Capt. Ryan Lynch, Lt. Sawyer Kent and 2nd Lt Dane Mannese. He also introduced Bruce MacElrath, Captain of the Fire Police and Ed Mackey Jr., who serves as Chaplain and Safety Officer, and Ed Bozydaj, also a Safety Officer. 
Rivieccio welcomed everyone to the annual banquet. 
“It is my great honor and privilege to work alongside the members of this department to serve as your Fire Chief. Thank you for your dedication and commitment to serving our community. Thank you to the families who stand by us, offering your boundless love and making countless sacrifices. We owe you a debt of gratitude that words cannot adequately express,” he said.
Rivieccio also thanked the Ladies Auxiliary for all they do for the department and the community and to the Mutual Aid companies, “for your unwavering support and for always having our backs.”
Rivieccio said last year the company responded to 175 calls and had 4,100 man hours, including calls, trainings and special events for the community. 
“These numbers also serve as the testament of the dedication of each member of our department,” he said.  
Rivieccio concluded by thanking all of the members of the department, “for your dedication, commitment and tireless service to our community.”
The department honored Marlboro’s past Fire Chief Robert Troncillito for his  60 years of service to the community.
James Kent Jr. and Art Tabasco each were honored for their 40 years of service to Milton.
Rivieccio thanked NYS Assemblyman Jonathan Jacobson for securing a grant for the purchase of a UTV and trailer.
Jacobson thanked all of the members for what they do for the community, “day in and day out. The residents of the town really don’t know how much money you save them; you are true public servants.” 
Everett Erichsen, representing the Ulster County Department of Emergency Services, said the 60 years of service to the Milton Fire Department by McElrath, “is truly impressive and amazing. He presented McElrath with a Certificate of Appreciation on behalf of Ulster County Executive Jen Metzger. 
County Executive Tom Corcoran reiterated how grateful everyone is for the dedicated service of the members of the Milton Fire Department. He read a long list of why God created the volunteer firefighter who is willing to help and care for those caught at the lowest and most vulnerable point in their lives during an emergency and do it simply because it is the right thing to do. He and fellow Legislator Gina Hansut presented McElrath with a certificate to honer his long service to the community.
Supervisor Scott Corcoran thanked the department and especially McElrath for is long years of service. 
“You guys are the first responders and come to almost every scene, every accident, every incident that happens and they take care of the citizens of the Town of Marlborough,” he said.
Supt. Corcoran bestowed a Pride of Marlborough commendation upon John McElrath Sr. 
McElrath said after he got out of the service he wanted to be a firefighter but at first was turned down. He was undeterred and pursued his dream anyway, “and the rest is history. I would also like to thank my wife, who has stood beside me for more than 52 years, and my family. Thank you all.”
A celebratory dinner followed.