The Great Neck Alert Fire Company honored one of their junior firefighters at a special ceremony that took place recently at the Company’s headquarters. A well-deserved award was presented to outgoing Captain Richard Deem for his hard work, dedication and extraordinary service to the Alert Junior Firefighters program. Richard also received a second award from the department for saving his grandfather’s life last summer.
Richard joined the Alert Juniors in February 2018 and prior to becoming Captain in 2022, he served as 1st Lieutenant in 2021. Last summer, while at home with his grandparents, Richard’s grandfather was attempting to swallow a pill when it became lodged in his throat, blocking his airway. His grandmother yelled for Richard, who came running down the stairs. Richard’s quick thinking and recall of his first aid and choking training instantly kicked in and he swiftly rendered the Heimlich maneuver, dislodging the pill and ultimately saving his grandfather’s life.
Richard is currently a junior at Kellenberg Memorial High School and he, along with the other junior firefighters in the program, is Red Cross certified in First Aid, CPR, and AED and receives this training annually. Richard will be exiting the juniors program in February when he turns 17, and plans to join the Great Neck Alert Fire Company as a member and firefighter.
—Submitted by the
Great Neck Alert Fire Company