Bring Back Halloween
I’ve been doing a lot of running lately and my runs occasionally bring me through Fort Tilden. One day while thinking to myself during a run, I began recalling childhood memories of Halloween and the haunted houses Rockaway residents used to host at their homes. I always remember being so scared of them as a kid and how you just don’t see those anymore. I also remember Fort Tilden used to host a haunted house and hayride. Not sure if it was the RAA who put that on, but that was such a great idea. I bet if they brought that back, it would be a huge success (hint, hint). I would just love to experience it again and bring my nephews along for the ride.
Not Just a Drill
From September 19 through 23, as has become my so-called annual pilgrimage, I attended the New York State Volunteer Ambulance and Rescue Association's Pulse Check Annual Convention, Educational Conference, and Trade Show, held for the last three years at the Albany Marriott (on Wolf Road).
In addition to many hours of classes regarding taking care of patients, as well as ourselves and our unit partners, one feature of the event is a First Aid Drill Team competition, consisting of both adult and youth squad personnel, from departments from all over New York State. They have to "treat" simulated trauma patients, and "package" them for transport, within a set amount of time. Field judges mark the teams for actions done, and not done, to the live "practice dummy," who is usually another teammate, or from another team.
As a member of the unfortunately defunct Peninsula Volunteer Ambulance Corps of the Rockaways, even before I started attending the conventions, I was aware of a neighboring department that had been winning almost all of the trophies in all judged categories. Indeed, the awards cabinet at their headquarters was larger than their current dispatchers room.
Over the years, however, the other department stopped fielding drill teams. I don't know why.
In my opinion, these drill teams serve a most important function, and it is not just bringing home another piece of display statuary. No matter who brings home the awards, it is the communities that the teams come from, that benefit from the drills. They eventually get medical personnel with experience in patient treatment and teamwork that I feel make them better when handling actual patients.
Richard C Berger,
Retired NY State EMT
Yesterday, October 1 at around 3 p.m. on the boardwalk at Beach 111th Street, a man was punched in the face at least four times possibly with a blade of sort in hand by a teenager. The teenager is a resident of St. John's home. He was identified by a counselor in St. John's and hopefully arrested. He had 15 prior arrests.
The victim was standing on the boardwalk, looking at the ocean, when the perpetrator bumped his bike into him. He then proceeded to punch him in the face. The attacker was with three other teenagers, one boy and two girls. They just stood there.
Please look into this to make the public aware of what happened and also the nearby school personnel, students and parents. St. John's (what kind of facility is it these days?)
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