FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 16, 2004
MAYOR MICHAEL R. BLOOMBERG AND FIRE COMMISSIONER NICHOLAS SCOPPETTA PRESIDE OVER GRADUATION CEREMONY FOR 163 PROBATIONARY FIREFIGHTERS
Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg and Fire Commissioner Nicholas Scoppetta today presided over a graduation ceremony for 163 Probationary Firefighters. The new Firefighters, or "Probies," graduate after completing the rigorous 12-week training program at the FDNY Training Academy located on Randall's Island. Thirty-six members graduating today have previously served in the military, including 39-year old Probationary Firefighter Darren Carey. Carey recently completed 20 years of service in the United States Marine Corps where he served all over the world and was most recently activated in Operation Iraqi Freedom before entering the fire academy. Several hundred friends and family members joined the Mayor and Commissioner to congratulate the third class of 2004 at the ceremony held at Brooklyn College.
"Today we welcome 163 graduates from the FDNY training academy to the greatest fire department in the world," said Mayor Bloomberg. "Today's graduates join an organization that not only protects New Yorkers each day from fire emergencies, but also now faces the complex challenges of defending our City against terrorism. The FDNY continually meets each challenge with dedication and commitment. On behalf of 8 million New Yorkers, I congratulate the City's newest firefighters and know they will bravely serve our City with pride and professionalism."
"Congratulations to all of today's graduates. Your time at The Rock has come to a close, but your days as a student will continue throughout your careers as firefighters," said Commissioner Scoppetta. "The next lessons will come as you enter the field and respond to emergencies under the tutelage of experienced firefighters and officers. Use those lessons to build on the foundation that has been provided to you by your instructors at the Academy as you serve the people of the City of New York."
Today's class featured a 19% minority representation, along with one female firefighter. Also graduating today were five firefighters whose loved ones were among the 343 FDNY members who gave their lives on 9-11.
While in training at the Fire Academy, the "Probies" learned firefighting techniques such as basic engine and truck operations, fire suppression and containment, hazardous materials training, and terrorism awareness. The "Probies" will now be assigned to firehouses throughout the City of New York, where they will gain field experience under the guidance of senior firefighters and officers. Prior to graduation, the Probationary Firefighter Class raised money to help assist an FDNY Shop Mechanic, assigned to the Fire Academy, with medical bills for his wife after she had fallen ill.
Probationary Firefighter Darren Brennan earned the honor of today's class Valedictorian, and Probationary Firefighter Timothy Brunton was the class Salutatorian. The Physical Fitness Award was given to Probationary Firefighter Kieran Frawley.
Edward Skyler / Robert Lawson (212) 788-2958
Francis X. Gribbon (Fire Department)