Rush VFW donates fire truck to SCCTC
BY PAT FARNELLI
Students learning about protective services at the Susquehanna County Career and Technology Center were thrilled to receive a fire engine donated by the Rush Volunteer Fire Department for emergency training.
The Rush fire company has been working with the career center since the program was conceived, and has been instrumental in its development, SCCTC Administrative Director Alice Davis said.
President Tom Jauss was pleased to present the emergency vehicle to the career center program, now that the fire company has replaced the previous engine with a new one. The choice was to either sell the older truck or donate it, and the members chose to donate it to the program for training purposes.
Program instructor Dickinson thanked the fire company members, saying, “I know this will expand their horizons. Thank you, guys, for this opportunity.”
“Without local donations, we would not have been able to make this happen,” said Fire Chief Tom Jauss. “I would like to thank the board of directors and you, Dr. Davis, for having the vision and broad paradigms to make this training opportunity possible.” He said he would like to see this program become a joint venture with other local fire departments.
Jauss noted, “One of the big hurdles fire departments face is getting new members. He said new membership is on a downward trend, nationwide, but that the Rush VFD is thankful to have a recent surge in young people joining their ranks, and hopes that more will volunteer.
Davis thanked the fire company members, and said, “In return, we would like to bring your members here for training in the evenings, so that you can continue to use this fire truck, and our facility, to train your volunteers.”
Davis and Dickinson noted that the yellow and white vehicle just happened to be painted in the SCCTC’s school colors, and Davis said that the career center’s auto body program students can detail the exterior and customize it with the SCCTC logo.
The program has recently been participating in the Essentials training program through the Luzerne County Community College, and SCCTC students have been completing the equipment, safety, fire extinguisher, and driving parts of that program. They are using donated fire and emergency equipment and uniforms from the Springville and United fire departments, Dickinson said.
Students pored over the vehicle, turning on the various lights and sirens and opening the side compartments and hatches to check out the axes and hoses. As the engine left the SCCTC garage after the ceremony, security students snapped cell phone photos out the classroom window to post online.
Attending the title signing, luncheon, and dedication ceremony were Chief Jauss, Assistant Chief Mike Jenner, President Ron Smith, and members Frank Conboy, Darren Hillard, Dan Conboy, Kenny and Lindsey Kiefer, Bob Shingler, Wayne Very, Rip Van Winkle, Gordon Moore, Tammy Stout, and Jerry Fives.
Stout, who is the Rush VFD and Fire Police treasurer, spent some time talking with high school students enrolled in the program, which is in its second year. They told her that they are being trained in police science, fire fighting, Emergency Medical Technician (EMT) training, and homeland security services.
Destiny and Samantha Herne, who are cousins from the Montrose Area School District taking the security program at the SCCTC, told Stout that the Rush fire hall is close to their homes in the Birchardville/Lawton area. Both sophomores, they agreed, “Every day, we look forward to coming here (SCCTC). This is the best part of our school day. We are learning so much in this program.”