Hometown Helpers: Chas Forte, Junior Firefighter

HuntingtonNow.com is taking a look at those who volunteer their time to make Huntington a better place to live.

Name, age, and school: Chas Forte, 16, Huntington High School

Organization: Halesite Fire Department

The project: I am an ex-captain of the Halesite Fire Department junior firefighter program. As junior firefighters, we assist the department in their events and do trainings. We do trainings such as hose handling and search and rescue. In February, I will be joining the Halesite Fire Department as a member of their Hook and Ladder Company.

Why did you choose this? How did you get started?: I got started in this program in January of 2015. I was one of the founding members of the program. Lt. KC Anna of Halesite’s hose rescue company came up with the idea to bring back the juniors program that has been dormant since the late 1980s.

What is your biggest achievement or takeaway from volunteering so far?: My biggest takeaway from this has been the brotherhood in the firehouse and that feeling of helping a neighbor in need. The firehouse is a family. Keep in mind,we are volunteers, we are doing this because we love helping the community.

Are you involved with any additional volunteering?: I am involved in other volunteer activities such as Young Leaders and Natural Helpers at Huntington High School.

Links for more information:  If you would like to volunteer at the Halesite Fire Department or become a member of the Juniors Program please go to www.halesitefd.org.

Forte’s experience in emergencies came to call off duty this the summer. In late August, Forte and boat partner Patrick Brady were out on the water when a family flagged them down. A man had swallowed saltwater and was close to drowning. Brady and Forte brought the man aboard their boat, radioed the Huntington Bay constable, and saw to it that the man was successfully transferred to an ambulance that met them at shore. Thanks to everyone’s quick responses that day, the man survived.

In early September; Forte was presented with a proclamation by the Town Board, recognizing his efforts.

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