PITTSFIELD, Mass. — Two city firefighters were honored by the governor for meritorious conduct.
Lt. Michael D'Avella and Firefighter Jarrett Robitaille were given awards on Tuesday morning by Gov. Charlie Baker, Public Safety Sec. Daniel Bennett, and State Fire Marshal Peter Ostroskey.
D'Avella and Robitaille were recognized for bravery for pulling 72-year-old Herdy Iroth from a burning building. The pair had rushed into Tahiti Takeout and found Iroth in an apartment on the second floor in the early hours of Dec. 8, 2016. The building had smoke showing on two sides and there was zero visibility inside. The two used thermal imaging to search and find Iroth and Robitaille carried the man down the stairs.
Iroth was transported to Berkshire Medical Center and then airlifted to the University of Massachusetts Medical Center in Worcester. Iroth died 10 days later because of the injuries related to the severe burns he received during the blaze.
D'Avella and Robitaille were just two of five firefighters across the state to receive awards for meritorious conduct at the Firefighter of the Year Awards Ceremony held at Worcester Mechanics Hall.
"The commonwealth's firefighters make tremendous sacrifices and risk their lives on a regular basis to protect the members of their communities," said Baker. "We are proud to salute this year's award recipients, who drew upon their training and experience to perform remarkable acts that saved lives."
Baker presented 33 awards. Three Norman Knight Awards for Excellence in Community Service were presented to a Wellesley fire and life safety education, a Lowell firefighter for work relating to the prevention of opioid deaths, and an Uxbridge deputy chief whose work led to a recall of a faulty combination smoke/carbon monoxide alarm.
Eight group awards for meritorious conduct were given to teams from Boston, Brockton, Cambridge, Hyannis, Holyoke, Lowell, Turners Falls, and Gill, Westwood, Canton, Dedham, Norwood, and Walpole.
Fifteen medals of valor were given to firefighters from Boston, Braintree, Brockton, Brookline, Holyoke, Mansfield, and Norwood.
And a medal of honor award was presented posthumously to Watertown firefighter Joseph Toscano.
"Our firefighters deserve our thanks and praise every day of the year, and it is important to recognize the incredible acts of bravery performed by these public servants in cities and towns across Massachusetts," said Lt. Gov. Karyn Polito.
"Whether battling house fires or educating children and seniors on fire prevention and safety, we are grateful for their selfless acts."
iBerkshires.com welcomes critical, respectful dialogue; please keep comments focused on the issues and not on personalities. Profanity, obscenity, racist language and harassment are not allowed. iBerkshires reserves the right to ban commenters or remove commenting on any article at any time. Concerns may be sent to email@example.com.
iBerkshires.com welcomes critical, respectful dialogue. Name-calling, personal attacks, libel, slander or foul language is not allowed. All comments are reviewed before posting and will be deleted or edited as necessary.
Boys & Girls Club Announces Pebble Beach Golf Raffle
PITTSFIELD, Mass. -- The Boys and Girls Club of the Berkshires has announced that raffle tickets for a trip to the world renown Pebble Beach Golf Resorts located on the Monterrey Peninsula of California are now available.
The winner will stay in the world class luxury accomodations at The Lodge at Pebble Beach which features an ocean side setting overlooking the famed 18th hole of The Pebble Bach Golf Links. The prize package includes one round for two of golf at the Pebble Beach Golf Links, and one round for two at Spyglass Hill Golf Course.
The Pebble Beach Course is recognized as one of the most beautiful courses in the world as it hugs the coastline and opens up to the Pacific Ocean and was the host of this year’s U.S. Open Championship.
The Spyglass Hill course is one of the most respected and revered courses in the world with views of the ocean and the natural beauty of the DeMonte Forest. The prize package includes up to $1,000 for airfare.
At a ward meeting, Helen Moon was elated to see a young woman in her 20s take a seat in the audience.
At ward meetings and at the polls, it is often the same group of people making their voices heard. But this woman wasn't someone Moon had heard much from in the past so it made her happy to see... click for more
The program is intended to provide coaching and mentorship to help young people take the first step in their careers. It has been ongoing in Pittsfield for 15 years, and for the last six Guardian Life Insurance has contributed.
click for more
The cracked and worn steps to City Hall stood between two mayoral candidates Tuesday night.
Councilor At Large and mayoral candidate Melissa Mazzeo and Mayor Linda Tyer sparred during the City Council meeting over the lack of repairs to those steps. In 2015, a storm led to significant flooding... click for more
At one point, Ashton Applewhite's biggest fear was that she'd end up "drooling in an institution" when she got old.
She was worried about memory loss. She didn't want to live a depressed life. Getting old was not something she wanted to even think about. But something changed when she embarked... click for more
Berkshire Community College is hosting the Pittsfield's Ward 5 and Ward 6 debates on Monday, Aug. 19, at 6 p.m. in the Koussevitzky Arts Center, Room K-111, at its main campus, 1350 West St.
click for more
For the third time in four months, the City Council said it wants to have a full conversation about downtown parking.
But it still hasn't determined how to do that - whether that means hiring a consultant or doing it internally. On Tuesday, the council agreed to have the city solicitor craft an... click for more