Dennis firefighters deliver warm coats for kids

1 unloading

WEST DENNIS – A truck packed with boxes of warm winter coats arrived at the Ezra H. Baker School in West Dennis on Wednesday morning. The coats, numbering over 200, were provided by the Dennis Professional Firefighters Association Local 2583 as part of a program sponsored by the International Association of Firefighters (IAFF) in association with the Operation Warm Foundation. In the photo above, Dennis firefighters form a bucket brigade to move cartons of warm coats into the Ezra H. Baker School.

The Local’s president, Dennis Fire Captain Wayne Conlon, said that members chose the coat donation as a community project last fall. Conlon reports that every member of the Dennis Fire Department made a personal donation of $100 to buy the coats and the remainder of the cost was covered by a number of local businesses. Separate from the coat program, hats and gloves were donated by Len Vera, a local businessman.

2 with tweeter

In the photo above, project organizer Dennis Firefighter Tim Chicoine displays one of the new American-made coats that were sized last fall for any child in the school that needed one. Firefighters hoped the coats would be delivered in time for Christmas but the shipment was delayed. Fortunately, the shipment’s arrival coincided with the first real cold weather of the season this week. After unloading the shipment at the school, firefighters spent two-and-half hours individually fitting each child with a new coat and writing each child’s name in it. Chicoine reported that nearly 200 warm coats were distributed along with a hat and pair of gloves for each child.

3 recipient

Ezra H. Baker School Principal Kevin Depin said he first heard about the program late last fall when he was contacted by Chicoine. Depin (at right in photo above watching a young recipient leave the fitting area with his new coat) said a number of children in the school were in need of a warm coat and the donation was very much appreciated. “I just saw a preschooler get a nice warm coat and you would have thought that someone gave him a million dollars. He was just so excited to have it.” Depin said.

Media release and photos provided by Dennis Professional Firefighters Association Local 2583.

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