Dear Fellow Ridgefielders:
On behalf of the volunteer members of the Ridgefield Fire Department, and the generations of volunteers who have gone before us, I want to thank you for your support and encouragement. Community firefighting is a community wide undertaking. Today, over 70 percent of the financial support for volunteer equipment and operations comes from your donations and contributions.
One hundred years ago, Ridgefield’s firefighters were able to bring little more than hope and courage to the fire scene. Protective equipment, specialized training, and sophisticated apparatus were simply not available.
Today, volunteers are cross trained with career personnel to demanding State and Federal standards. In addition to interior and exterior fire suppression activities, volunteers are schooled in various specialties including emergency medical services, water supply, vehicle extrication, confined quarters rescue, water/ice rescue, hazardous materials handling, fire education, fire photography and arson investigation. In fact, volunteer men and women contributed over 35,000 person-hours last year to training activities alone.
Ridgefield has changed over the last century from a tiny farming and mill town to a thriving residential and business center comprised mostly of families headed by working parents. That residents can be so generous with their time in the face of conflicting demands is one of the defining aspects of our community today.
The volunteer Line Officers, Fire Commission and Executive Board give special thanks to today’s volunteers and their families and to the members of the department’s Ladies Auxiliary for their tireless service to our community. To firefighters throughout the region who have on innumerable occasions lent a hand through mutual aid, we offer thanks. To our brother and sister career firefighters and paramedics at the RFD, we send greetings and look forward to another century of partnership in service.
Tim Pambianchi, Chief