Sen. Linares Honors Haddam Volunteer Fire Company at Capitol

May 2, 2014

Article as it appeared in the Patch

Haddam Volunteer Fire Company’s Stair Climb team was praised May 1 in the State Senate for being the top fundraising team among fire departments at the Fight for Air Climb in Hartford.

Haddam Fire’s Stair Climb team was praised May 1 by Sen. Art Linares, R-Westbrook. Accepting the official citation on behalf of the Fire Company was Public Information Officer Jesse Drake.

Sen. Art Linares, R-Westbrook, read the names of Dan Casey, Chet Crocco, Jeff Doskos, Robert Norton Jr., Mike Mancuso, Jed Morrissey, Jay Selmer and Kate Zarbo as part of a “Point of Privilege” in which constituents are recognized prior to the legislative session.

“We wanted to honor the Haddam Volunteer Fire Company here in this historic building to let the rest of the state know how we proud we are of their efforts,” Linares said.

Sen. Linares represents the 33rd District that encompasses the towns of Chester, Clinton, Colchester, Deep River, East Haddam, East Hampton, Essex, Haddam, Lyme, Old Saybrook, Portland and Westbrook.

Linares also presented an official citation signed by the Senate’s President Pro Tempore Donald Williams Jr., Speaker of the House Brendan Sharkey and Secretary of State Denise Merrill. Accepting on behalf of the Fire Company was Public Information Officer Jesse Drake.

“This is a fitting salute to the gentleman, and lady, who represented our Fire Company so admirably,” Drake said. “I’ve participated in the climb before and it’s very demanding. But to raise as much money as they did, that takes the accomplishment to a whole new level.”

Once framed, the citation will be hung at one of Haddam’s three stations.

The seventh annual Climb to benefit the American Lung Association took place on April 5 at City Place in Hartford. The team ascended 34 floors, or 750 steps, wearing full gear and Self Contained Breathing Apparatus (SCBA). Firefighter Jay Selmer had the fastest finish at 7:29, remarkable considering it was his third climb of the day, second in full gear. Selmer also ranked first in his age bracket.

“I’m tired just thinking about that climb!” Linares said.

As for funds, Haddam raised $3,185, ranking them as not only the top fire department out of 17 teams but also seventh overall out of 63 teams.

Their goal next year? Well, they can only go up from here!

Learn more about the Air Climb at