It was yet another shining moment in Joseph Polisena’s tenure as mayor as well as the men and women of the Johnston Fire Department.
Sometime around 11:15 Tuesday morning, Polisena arrived at the Johnston Fire Department headquarters at 1520 Atwood Avenue and immediately began chatting with Chief Peter J. Lamb and some firefighters and battalion chiefs.
It was long thereafter when a host of firefighters lined up in front of two shiny fire trucks as if they were going to receive a pep talk of sorts from Polisena.
On the contrary, Polisena heaped words of praise upon the “men and women of the best fire department in the state” who the mayor thanked time and again “for the great service you provide to keep our citizens safe.”
In short, the assembly was to have the Town of Johnston’s two new fire trucks blessed and celebrate yet another milestone in his ongoing effort “to provide our firefighters with the best equipment possible to perform their [necessary] and daily duties.”
And, as Polisena boasted during his complimentary speech, “these two fire trucks didn’t cost a dime!”
Johnston, as the mayor let it be known, now has two new fire trucks – Engine 2 and Engine 3 – that the town purchased from permit fees during the on-going building of the Citizens Bank campus located at 735 Greenville Avenue.
“Look at those beauties,” Polisena said with a smile. “They are both 2017 model years and now we have these up-to-date engines at absolutely no cost – I repeat no cost – to the taxpayers. These apparatus didn’t cost us a dime.”
Both new fire trucks have a 1250-gallon-per-minute pump capacity and carry 750 gallons of water and 30 gallons of foam concentrate as well as all standard equipment required by the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).
Before introducing Rev. Ryan Simas, the Assistant Pastor at Saint Philip Church in Greenville who doubles as Chaplin for the JFD, Polisena again told the firefighters: “I really appreciate what you people continue to do for our town.”
Father Ryan, who has performed the blessing of other JFD apparatus in recent years, began: “God, just and living ruler of mankind, to whom as its Creator your creature, fire, is so readily subject that on the one hadn’t it blazes and threatens us with danger and destruction, and on the other it burns lightly to serve the needs of the devout, kindly hear our prayers and pour out your blessings on these fire engines. Protect us, as well, the fire fighters who will use these pieces of apparatus and keep them safe from all harm. This we ask through your Son, Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns forever and ever. Amen.”