Citizens Form Volunteer Brigades To Assist Career Colleagues
by: Lou Angeli
Well, today is next Thursday, and it has come and gone. The administration will not consider a simple language change, a short clause which would protect newly-hired firefighters from being dropped. A small request to bring about unity and guarantee citizen safety.
In the meantime, Lord William Montgomery suggested that 8 layoffs would not be sufficient and to expect more firings.
"We're considering 30 layoffs in total,' Montgomery explained, 'because we still haven't fully funded the Barber Shop Quartet Festival," which is scheduled to be held on the Riverfront in August.
Montgomery continued, "Knocking off another 22 firefighters should do the trick and provide us the monies needed to make this a wholesome, well attended event."
In the meantime, Wilmingtonians are gearing up to provide their own fire-rescue protection. In the city's Little Italy section, a new mimi-pumper was donated by private contributions to residents of "The Antonian," a high rise apartment complex for the elderly. The brigade is currently conducting training in the parish rectory, and includes both men and women.
Leading the new brigade into action is Brother Mike, a St. Anthony's icon, most recognized for his work during the Italian festival. Mike is confident that the brigade will be effective.
"I guarantee you that we'll smoke Engine 6 anywhere northof 8th Street," said the 87 year old Oblate. "Hell, let em roll the entire house -- we'll have the fire knocked down by the time they arrive."
"They can take up my freakin' lines!" said Dolores DeFeo, who at 92, is wagon driver for the brigade.
Dolores proudly notes that she comes from firefighting stock. Her great grandfather was part of the Rome Fire Brigade during Nero's famous violin solo.
"We concede that our career colleagues are under a bit of a disadvantage," said Rev. Theo Green, of Riverside. "We're simply trying to give them a helping hand during these hard times."
It's Rev Green and Brother Mike's enthusiasm that will allow the members of the Wilmington Fire Department to keep their minds during the final years of the Baker administration.
We're all hoping that by then, someone special ascends to Wilmington's Mayordom. Perhaps someone who understands that public safety is about protecting the citizen public -- not playing head games with firefighters and law enforcement personnel.
Note: Like Weekend Update, many of the stories and comments which appear in the piece have been fabricated. For example, Dolores DeFeo is only 91.