Archive for category Reader submission

Of interest … passerby pulls crash victim from car

Excerpts from

Around 3 a.m. Sunday, Chris Cammon was waiting for a bus at the corner of 79th Street and Jeffery Boulevard, when he heard the sounds of cars drag racing blocks away. As two cars raced towards the intersection, one clipped the other and crashed into a traffic light pole erupting in fire.  With help from others, he pulled a 24-year-old man from behind the wheel of the burning vehicle, and dragged him across the street to safety.

By 3:15 a.m., emergency responders firefighters were on the scene and put out the flames. The victim survived, and was taken in critical condition to the University of Chicago Medical Center.


2019 Chicago Air and Water show

From Steve Redick at the 2019 Chicago Air and Water show

Chicago FD Fire Boat 6-8-8

Steve Redick photo

Chicago FD helicopter deploys a diver

Steve Redick photo

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2019 Westmont Fire Truck Parade

From Asher Heimermann:

A fire truck parade was the highlight of the Westmont Cruisin’ Night & Street Fair in Westmont, Illinois on Thursday, August 8, 2019. Video by Asher Heimermann/Incident Response.

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Of interest … FEMA AND FCC to conduct nationwide EAS test



WASHINGTON, July 24, 2019—FEMA, in coordination with the Federal Communications Commission, will conduct a nationwide test of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) on Wednesday, Aug. 7, 2019.  The test will be sent to radio and television stations beginning at 2:20 p.m. EDT.

The test is being conducted through FEMA’s Integrated Public Alert and Warning System. The test message will originate from designated radio stations, known as Primary Entry Point stations, which participate in a component of IPAWS called the National Public Warning System.

All other radio and television stations, cable, wireline service providers, and direct broadcast satellite service providers should subsequently receive and broadcast the test message.

The test will evaluate the readiness of the national alerting capability in the absence of internet connectivity. The test will be approximately one minute long, have a limited impact on the public with only minor interruption of radio and television programs, and will be similar to regular monthly EAS tests.  Both the audio message and text crawl should be accessible to people with disabilities.

The test will not include a message on cell phones via Wireless Emergency Alerts.

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As seen around … Chicago

This from Steve Redick:

former Chicago FD Fire Boat Fred A Busse Engine 41

Steve Redick photo

former Chicago FD Fire Boat Fred A Busse Engine 41

Steve Redick photo

former Chicago FD Fire Boat Fred A Busse Engine 41

Steve Redick photo

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2019 Chicagoland Emergency Vehicle Parade

From Asher Heimermann:

The 2019 Chicagoland Emergency Vehicle Parade had a new 11-mile route through the cities of North Aurora and Aurora, Illinois on Friday, August 2, 2019. Video by Asher Heimermann/Incident Response

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A request for assistance …

Hello there!

I am doing research on my family tree and there is a firefighter who married my great grandmother. I am trying to find out more about him and was wondering if you could help. He appears in another family tree and the owner of that tree has very little info about him but said he worked at Engine 95 in Chicago.

His name is Peter John McAndrews. When he was born on August 22, 1890, in New Castle, Delaware, his father, Thomas, was 28 and his mother, Bridget, was 26. He had one son (John) from one relationship. He then married Anna Griswald on July 20, 1920, in Chicago, Illinois. He died on May 2, 1971, in Chicago, Illinois, at the age of 80. The 1920 Census puts him at 4043 West Lake Street which is a short walk from your firehouse.

Here is the official census record:

The 1920 Census for Peter John McAndrews

click to download

Below is a photo of my grandmother wearing the hat. I’ve been told the fireman sitting down is wearing a captain’s hat but don’t know about the other 4 guys. And I don’t know if anyone in the photo is the Peter I’m looking for. If you or someone else could help me out, I would be so thankful! Did they take photos of the firemen back then for identification? Can I get a photo of Peter from his time at the firehouse? How long did he work there? Did he retire as a fireman or did he leave he fire house altogether? If so, why? What kind of person/worker was he? I’ve got other questions but this gives you an idea of what I’m looking for.

historic photo of firefighters in Chicago

I live in Bolingbrook so if someone would like me to drive out to the city to share what they know about him, I’d be happy to do that.

Please feel free to forward my email to anyone you know who can assist me in my family tree research.


Tom Wagner

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A request for assistance … found firefighter helmet

This from Phil Bretz:

I found a helmet that’s from engine 9 with the name of Brown 20792……I work for the city of blue island public works and the helmet will be here for a few days, it was in a junk pile… not sure if he wants it back or if it’s all used up and Indeed it was decommissioned


Of interest … photographer/journalist arrested at crash scene

Excerpts from the

A DuPage County judge dismissed charges Thursday against a freelance video journalist who was arrested while shooting footage of a crash along Interstate 88 near Naperville. After hearing testimony from the Illinois State Police trooper who arrested David Weaver, of Sugar Grove, Judge Joseph Bugos dismissed misdemeanor counts at the midpoint of Weaver’s bench trial.

Weaver’s attorney, Matthew Topic, argued that prosecutors had failed to meet their burden on misdemeanor counts of stopping in a roadway, walking improperly on a roadway and failure to yield to emergency vehicles. The judge agreed, halting the trial after the presentation of the prosecution case and dismissing the counts. In a pretrial ruling, the judge had dismissed a trespassing charge.

Weaver, who shoots video that he sells to area television stations, was arrested Aug. 11, 2018, as he was recording a fiery two-car crash on eastbound I-88 near the Illinois Route 59 ramp.

He said after the trial that he was not interfering with the emergency personnel and was on the other side of the median when he was arrested by the trooper.

His attorney, a specialist in free speech matters, said the case presented possible First Amendment issues. But Topic said they were able to prevail on more basic grounds that the state had failed to prove the legal elements of the statutes that Weaver was accused of violating.

“This didn’t end up being a First Amendment case, but we were prepared to go there,” Topic said.


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As seen around … places unknown