Colonel Ann C. Assumpico, Director of the Rhode Island Department of Public Safety, announces that 18 firefighter trainees from four communities graduated today from the Rhode Island Municipal Fire Academy after completing a nine-week training and certification program to become firefighters.
"These recruits have received top-notch training and are well-prepared for the challenges ahead," Colonel Assumpico said. "They deserve our respect and admiration for choosing a career in public service, one in which they will risk their lives to protect the lives of others in their communities."
More than 100 people attended a graduation ceremony at the Rhode Island Fire Training Academy to honor the 18 new firefighters, including 13 from East Providence; 3 from Smithfield; and 1 each from Central Coventry and Cumberland. The class included the first woman to complete the statewide program.
The ceremony included remarks from Colonel Assumpico, Acting State Fire Marshal James B. Gumbley and Mark S. Pare, Director of the Rhode Island Fire Training Academy.
Joseph J. Klucznik, Deputy Director of the Massachusetts Firefighting Academy, gave the keynote address, in which he told the new firefighters that the public puts firefighters on a pedestal – but they need to work hard to earn their spots there.
Deputy Klucznik said firefighters are among the most trusted people in their communities, noting that parents will hand over their infants and children to firefighters, and businesses owners will entrust them with keys to their companies. "They look to us for an answer; they ask us to solve their problems."
He encouraged the new firefighters to continue training and learning, so they will be able to answer the call when someone needs their help. He concluded by telling the new graduates: "Stay safe, stay trained, stay educated – and enjoy every minute of your careers."
Here's a list of graduates by Fire Department:
Central Coventry Fire Department:
Russell C. Lavoie, Jr.
Cumberland Fire Department:
John Rei IV
East Providence Fire Department:
Jordan Baeszler; Manuel J. Benevides; Erica L. Carcieri; Piero Colonna; Gregory Dubee; Brendan Dyer; Christopher J. Harrington; Adam Maroney; Justin Rapp; Nicholas A. Simone; Damon R. Solomon; Ricky Tiburcio; and Conrad Weeden
Smithfield Fire Department:
Eric Barros, Mark Euell and Thomas W. Rotondo III