Goshen volunteers open firehouse doors

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Firefighter Autumn Shaw of Goshen helps Adrina Bozarth use a fire hose Tuesday night. Firefighter Autumn Shaw of Goshen helps Adrina Bozarth use a fire hose Tuesday night.

Kids impressed at fire prevention event

GOSHEN – Children rode in a fire truck Tuesday night, with the lights flashing and sirens blaring.

“It was fun. It was big,” said 9-year-old Ray Bozarth of Dennisville. “The horns are funny.”

Outside, the fire truck is red, he said, but colorful inside because of the flashing lights. Bozarth also said he liked the exterior of the vehicle with the hoses and masks.

The Goshen Volunteer Fire Co. hosted the event Tuesday, Oct. 9, as part of the nationally recognized Fire Prevention Week. Its fire station is along Route 47, and the fire company serves 17 square miles of Middle Township.

Even though Bozarth went on at least two approximately 2-mile trips in the fire truck Tuesday, he admitted he doesn’t want to be a firefighter when he’s older. He said that’s not what he’s into.

“And I don’t want to get burned,” he said.

Ray and his sister, Adrina Bozarth, 4, also wore firefighter uniforms at the Goshen fire house.

A firefighter and another person who volunteered her time Tuesday night helped the children get the uniforms on.

“That’s a lot of gear, huh, pumpkin?” their mom Xenia Bozarth said of Adrina in the firefighter uniform.

Ray and Adrina suited up so they could use a hose to spray water into a hole as part of a game.

“The uniform felt, like, really heavy,” Ray said. “And I felt like a real fireman.”

Xenia said the children have come in past years as well.

“I think it’s a good thing to teach kids the ups and downs of the fires,” she said.

Holding the event is important so children can experience and learn about fire fighting, said fire company Capt. Autumn Shaw.

She followed in her dad’s and brother’s footsteps in joining the Goshen fire company. The 26-year-old of Goshen has been a member for 7 ½ years.

“It feels good,” Everett Garrison said of seeing children having an interest in what firefighters do.

Being a volunteer firefighter is a “dying breed,” he said.

Garrison said he grew up around firefighting, with his stepfather as a fireman with the Rio Grande Volunteer Fire Co.

The 21-year-old of Cape May Court House has been a member of the Goshen fire company around six years.

Goshen’s fire company has 24 members, according to fire company Chief Frank Svitak.

He said membership fluctuates. Members range from 21 years old to 69.

About 15 Goshen fire company members helped Tuesday night. Children were able to take home a pink or red firefighter helmet and other items, like bracelets.

Fire Prevention Week began as a way to remember the Great Chicago Fire of 1871. The blaze killed more than 250 people, left 100,000 homeless, destroyed more than 17,400 structures and burned more than 2,000 acres, according to the National Fire Protection Association website.

U.S. President Woodrow Wilson declared National Fire Week Prevention Day in 1920; Fire Prevention Week has been held annually around Oct. 9 since 1922.

For information on the Goshen Volunteer Fire Co., see www.goshen74.com.


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