BERLIN - The Berlin Volunteer Fire Department received recognition from the Berlin Veterans Commission last month for its efforts to help veterans.
Charles Colaresi, chairman of the commission, and Peter Galgano, secretary of the commission, gave the fire department a plaque before one of the department’s meetings as a sign of thanks for their fundraising efforts.
“Presented to the Berlin Volunteer Fire Department For your Generous Donations, Time and Continuous Support to help the lives of our Veterans in the Town of Berlin,” the plaque reads. “Your dedication to making the lives of our veterans better will never be forgotten.”
The plaque was given to the department because of the money it has fundraised for veterans the past three years, which was $11,000 most recently.
With the amount raised last year, the commission was able to give gift cards to about 20 veterans in town in the amount of $200, instead of the normal $50, Colaresi said. The funds go toward groceries, paying bills and anything else a veteran may need help with, Colaresi has said.
One 33-year-old resident, who returned from a tour in Afghanistan and has a 3-year-old, received $1,000, Colaresi said.
The fire department has raised the funds over the year from its “Freedom Fry” booth sales at the Berlin Fair, a comedy show that retired firefighter Al Pipkin puts on, its car show, a bus trip to a casino and a fill-the-boot fundraiser at the town’s tree-lighting ceremony.
“It’s all because of you,” Colaresi told the firefighters when presenting the plaque.
“That’s from all of our hearts to you,” Galgano said.
Members of the department in attendance for the meeting gave a resounding thank you to Colaresi and Galgano for the recognition.
Charles Paullin can be reached at 860-801-5074 or firstname.lastname@example.org.