November 11, 2008 at 3:03 pm
Where and when was this taken?
Entry filed under: buildings, transportation. Tags: car, fire department, Melville, New York, rescue.
Melville Fire Department in the news Fire department cornerstone, 1948
Thomas Crist | November 14, 2008 at 7:03 pm
This is a 1941 Packard Amulance in probably a Memorial Day Parade on New York Avenue near Nassau Rd., Huntington Station.
Due to a tragic accident, it was the first ambulance purchased by The Melville Volunteer Fire Company.
On September 20, 1948, Charter Member Floyd Baylis was involved in a tragic automobile accident on Walt Whitman Road in front of Joe’s Diner, presently the location of Empire Szechuan Chinese Restaurant. Unfortunately he died at the scene while waiting for an ambulance to respond from Huntington Hospital. This tragedy reinforced the need for expedient emergency first-aid care in Melville. Members began talking about obtaining their own ambulance.
Chiefs Hauser and Graeser took the initiative to visit Colonel Henry L. Stimson who resided on High Hold Drive. The Colonel, a former Secretary of State and Cabinet Member under Presidents Hoover, F. D. Roosevelt and Truman, congratulated them on their progress and graciously donated $1,000 dollars towards the purchase of an ambulance. A used 1941 Packard hearse, which had previously been converted to an ambulance, was purchased from Donald Gordon of Northport. This first ambulance was used until 1958 when the Department purchased a used 1941 Cadillac Ambulance from the Northport Fire Department and turned it over to the Fire District. The original Packard Ambulance was donated to the Miller Place Fire Department where it served as their first ambulance until 1962.
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