Our Sandy Story

We are first responders and the first line of defense since 1910 for our little community of Roxbury, Breezy Point, NY.  As Hurricane Sandy approached New York City on October 29th, 2012 and a mandatory evacuation order was issued,  our volunteer firefighters and emergency medical personnel remained on duty in the best tradition of their 102 year history.  They got prepared for the worst.

The initial surge of Hurricane Sandy as the pounding Atlantic Ocean met Jamaica Bay flooded the RVFD firehouse with 6 feet of salt water.  Being forced to climb to the attic of the firehouse the vollies continued to maintain their vigil. When a distant house fire became visible they sounded the first alarm and notified FDNY by radio.  In response, they were advised to let the homes burn because it was then impossible to get FDNY apparatus to the scene through the flood waters.  The RVFD team prayed as they waited for the raging waters to subsided to a point where their single engine was able to roll.  Driving deftly through deep water they arrived on scene to find an enormous fire burning wildly amid hurricane winds and chest deep water.  Storm tossed debris had ruptured a fire hydrant causing insufficient  fire main pressure, but by linking all of their hoses the RVFD brush truck was able to pump directly from the swirling flood water to fight the fire 2-1/2 blocks away.  Our brave volunteers got first water on the fire and did their best to fight the fast moving inferno whipped by hurricane force winds as it jumped from house to house eventually destroying 111 of our neighbor’s homes.

We lost our only ambulance, the new emergency generator, our Jaws, all our gas saws, all the radio gear, and other items too numerous to enumerate.

Although we have always been able to count on the faithful Breezy Point  residents to provide whatever financial help was needed to maintain our fire fighting, rescue, and ambulance services in good repair and availability, we now find ourselves in the awkward position of needing to replace all of our damaged or destroyed equipment and vital gear.  None the less, we remain on duty with borrowed equipment and donated food, water, and fuel while the firehouse serves as the community center and distribution point for comfort, food and clothes as we all face the long road to recovery ahead.

Should you care to help us as we rebuild our emergency service, please consider making a tax-exempt contribution - your generosity would be much appreciated.

The Roxbury Volunteer Emergency Services, Inc. is a registered New York State 501(c)3 not-for-profit entity and member of VFACNY, FASNY, and SNYVFA