Released 22 August 2013
Helping Downtown New London Fire Responders
The Salvation Army’s EDS Team Serves!
NEW LONDON - On August 21, a 3-alarm fire broke out in an apartment building, just down the block from New London's City Hall. This apartment building was located in a very busy business section of downtown, resulting in many surrounding businesses closing for most of the day and surrounding streets being blocked off. Among the first responders helping the New London Fire Department address this situation was The Salvation Army in New London's very own Emergency Disaster Services (EDS) Team! They brought with them Canteen 1, one of The Salvation Army’s mobile feeding trucks. The team was lead by Emergency Disaster Services Director and Volunteer Coordinator Robert Heal.
Once there, Mr. Heal's team offered what is known as on the spot 'Firefighters Rehab,' providing ice cold water and other necessities during cool down times taken by the firefighters. Such breaks help to prevent heat exhaustion or other health issues from occurring. In the end, the fire took out the top two stories of the four-story building, which also housed Monica's State Street Diner and Zambala Grocery Store. The water that was distributed was welcomed immensely, especially since this fire took place during a very hot, humid summer day.
Assisting Mr. Heal during this event was his volunteer team, consisting of Bill Archer, Eric Baxter, and Rob Maynard. Help also came from The Salvation Army's New London Commanding Officer Captain Jose Borrero and Office Manager Bessie Childs. Captain Borrero and Bessie brought with them a new, urgently needed supply of bottled water. They also jumped onto the EDS Canteen to help cook and give out food, which provided the firefighters with renewed and much-appreciated-for-the-job energy!
Moving forward, The Salvation Army in New London has invited those affected by the fire to stop by its 11 Governor Winthrop Boulevard location for additional assistance. The Salvation Army takes pride in being one of the first to arrive and last to leave the site of a disaster. For those families who go on to benefit from continued services, The Salvation Army is just proud to continue helping however possible.