Harwich Fire Department holds promotion, swearing in ceremonies

HARWICH – After the retirement of a 33 year member of the Harwich Fire Department, Chief Norman Clarke Wedensday promoted a  new lieutenant and hired a new firefighter to fill the position.

The ceremony, attended by department members, town officials, Harwich Police, surrounding fire departments and family took place in front of the Robert A Peterson Firehouse on Sisson Rd..

Firefighter Ryan Edwards, a ten year member of the department and son of retired Orleans Fire Chief Steven Edwards was administered his oath by Harwich Town Clerk Anita Doucette.

Edwards, “a quiet leader that presents himself as a true professional”, according to Chief Clarke was one of several very qualified candidates for the position. Immediately following the oath, Ryan’s father pinned his Lieutenant’s badge on his uniform.

William Schneeweiss came to the Harwich Fire Department as a Provisional Firefighter after working as a Call Firefighter in Brewster. The provisional role is a difficult one because of its temporary nature and the fact that it is essentially a non-stop job interview.

Chief Clarke credited Bill with “fitting in, knowing his place, knowing when to speak and knowing when to listen.” After taking his oath from the Town Clerk, Bill’s mother Joan pinned his badge on his uniform.

Both Ryan and Bill were presented their certificates of appointment by Chief Clarke and their new helmet shields by Deputy Chief Dave LeBlanc.

Firefighter Jeff Erving was also recognized for completing his one year probationary period. Jeff was given a helmet front that signifies Engine Company 65, which is his current assignment.

The Department Chaplain, Father Marc Tremblay assisted with the ceremony, offering words of guidance from Father Mychal Judge, a chaplain for the New York City Fire Department that was killed on September 11th. “Lord, take me where you want me to go; Let me meet who you want me to meet; Tell me what You want me to say, and Keep me out of Your way.”

Chief Norman Clarke with firefighter William Schneeweiss

Chief Norman Clark with Ryan Edwards

Chief Norman Clarke, Firefighter Jeff Erving, Deputy Chief David LeBlanc


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