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Archives of Cicero Firefighters Union Local #717.

 
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Local 717 is proud of several of our firefighters that competed in the Scott Firefighter Challenge in Tinley Park from September 24 to 25, 2011.  The following Members Competed: Matt Hill 2:10, Brian Kuluga 2:05, Brian McDonald 2:46, Joey Barratta 2:53, Kenny Pereya 2:51, Noah Buckley 3:07, Pat Sammon 2:36, Paul Lyttek 2:24, T.J. Santoro 2:56.

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Fire Up a Cure

Cicero Firefighters Local 717 & Berwyn Local 506 members participated in the First Annual "Fire Up a Cure." Competitions were on Saturday, July 21, 2012 at St. Xavier University.

Joe Belgio, Stephen Fiore, Pat Sammon, Andrew michaels and Paul Lytek.

Cicero Firefighters Local 717 members participated in the First Annual "Fire Up a Cure" competitions.

Cicero Firefighters Local 717 and Berwyn Local 506 team up together for one cause.

Cicero Firefighter Steve Fiore dragging the dummy in the First Annual "Fire Up a Cure" competitions.

Firefighter Joe Belgio victorous in the joist competition.

Lt. Paul Lytek pulls a fire engine.

 

Cicero Promotions

 

Local 717 would like to congratulate members Firefighter Ken Pereya and Firefighter Brad Erickson, who were promoted to the rank of engineer as of July 24th, 2012.

Local 717 would like to congratulate members Eric Pagni & Harry Rutz, who were recently promoted.

Former Vice President Lt. Eric Pagni promoted to Deputy Chief 7/12/2012.

President Eric Habercoss (white polo) presents newly promoted Deputy Chief Eric Pagni with a certificate of appreciation from all his fellow union brothers.

Secretary Harry Rutz being sworn in to Fire Prevention Lt. 7/10/2012

 

 

Charity Sled Hockey Game

Cicero Local 717 Members participating in a charity sled hockey game against the RIC Blackhawks pro sled hockey team, this took place Feb. 2012

 

Cicero Brothers support Oak Lawn, Local 3405, distributing literature to inform public of fire department layoffs

 

Fire And Ice- From the Paul Harvey News

Nobody knows why firemen are firemen. Not even they can tell you why. It's time someone try to tell you why. Firefighting is the most risky of all dead-end jobs yet also the one where most workers are most likely to punch in early. It's hard enough to believe that; impossible to explain it. Fire an ice are uncomfortable, separate or together. Wives hate the hours kids love the noise. Fire and ice.

Any day at the firehouse the bell from hell puts the dispatcher on the horn with a tenement tinderbox address. Into bunker pants- rubber turnout coat- grab the mask-and go. Minutes later you're on site, as others run out you go in. You'll need all you can carry. The four pound axe, a six foot hook, and the Halligen pry-bar. The ceiling concealing the smoldering has to come down and it's one of those stubborn tin ones. In the scary dark with heat eating your ears you are gouging out and tearing loose and pulling apart; gulping air and tasting black; your windpipe is closing and you've lost track of which way is out. Is it worth it?

They've budget- cut your ladder company from six men to five so now everything you do is 16.67% more difficult, more dangerous. Your air is low. Inside your mask you're throwing up. There's a searing ember down your neck; torn gloves exposing a mashed hand so you emerge from the holocaust hugging in your elbows some body's singing kitten. Fire and ice.

You've had minutes of exhilaration on the bouncing rear mount of a screaming hundred-foot Seagrave. Hours of using all you've learned and learning more. Now you're back at the stationhouse. You've unstuffed your nostrils with soapy fingers. You can almost breath again.

Next come the tedious hours as you and Brillo gang up on grimy tools. The cleanup crew at the firehouse is you. When windows need washing and toilets need cleaning and floors need mopping and beds need making- you do it. Fire and ice; they both go with the job.

Then there's that night another engine company gets there first. You see this wet- eared rookie hot- dogging ahead. His academy boots still shiny. You lose him inside the crackling dark. You forget about him until your helmet warning bell says "get out". The battalion chief is calling you off. You get out. He'd heard a scream from the bottom of burning basement stairs and he'd headed down there.

The other guy didn't. When on the bubbling tar- paper roof of the three- ton compressor broke through.

 

That day we lost two. Oh yes, firemen cry. But only briefly because now comes the inevitable and ever- more paperwork just in case OSHA complains or somebody sues. Your B-crew pumper swapped his day shift so some family guy could be home foe his kid's birthday. Then outbound toward a false alarm your buddy gets blind- sided by a hot- rod driven by a drunk. Fire and ice.

The intercom barks again. This time it's a warehouse a big, fast, multiple blaze, probably torched.

On site engine men draped with icicles dragging a three- quarter pre- connect froze hose are waiting for your big line. Laddermen can't make the building without you. Search, rescue, ventilate. Eventually it's over and out. You're smoke smudged and sleepless and wrung out- but you won! Behind graffiti- fouled walls you saved what you could but the raging blaze that wanted to consume adjacent buildings but didn't- because you were there.

Back at the firehouse before cleanup you and the guys sit a spell- tired but stimulated- drinking coffee laughing, feeling good about one another. Nobody outside your world can ever know this feeling. In any other uniform you get streets named after you for killing people. In this one you risk your life to save people. Until one day you run out of chances and at one final fire either you buy it or you don't.

If you don't it's only eventually to be brushed off with a puny pension. Yet there's no third way you'd ever leave this job and you're doubting even God knows why. You're out of the shower now. Most of the grime and some of the cynicism are down the drain when you hear a strangely familiar voice saying, "Its worth it."

The quiet voice from nowhere is saying "For salvaging things and people from flames I have to rely on your hands." You look around; still nobody. But when you get over your incredulity you feel better. Suddenly today's crew cook in the kitchen hollers "Chow!" It's time to eat. It smells like roast beef today. That'll be good. But you'll eat fast. For any next alarm you'll want to be ready.

From the Paul Harvey News

 

 

 

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Cicero Firefighters are members of the International Association of Fire Fighters & Associated Fire Fighters of Illinois.

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Cicero Firefighters proudly support MDA.

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Training to be ready for any emergency to protect Cicero residents & visitors.

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Cicero IAFF Local #717 has dedicated Union Firefighters serving 24/7/365.

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