Assemblyman Mark Johns (R,C,I-Webster) this week introduced resolutions in the New York State Assembly that honored West Webster Firefighters Michael Chiapperini, Tomasz Kaczowka, Joseph Hofstetter, Ted Scardino and other first responders who answered the call to the fire and shooting on Lake Road in Webster onDecember 24, 2012.
Firefighters Chiapperini and Kaczowka were shot and killed while responding to the fire on Lake Road. Two other firefighters, Scardino and Hofstetter, were wounded on the scene. Chiapperini, who was also a lieutenant with the Webster Police Department, is being honored posthumously in Albany today at the State of New York Police Officers Ceremony. Assemblyman Johns is attending the event after Legislative Session.
“As a resident of West Webster, I am honored to call many of the members of the local fire and police departments my friends and I am humbled to pay tribute to these local heroes in a simple, yet significant way,” said Johns. “I could not be more proud of the heroism displayed by these men, and the way our community has come together to honor them and other first responders is truly awe-inspiring.”
State Resolution K398 mourns Chiapperini and pays tribute to his life and 25 years of service to the West Webster Fire Department (WWFD) and 19 years of duty as a Webster Police Officer. Chiapperini was also an advisor to WWFD’s Explorer Post and 2012 Firefighter of the Year. He is survived by his wife, Kimberly, and three children, Nicholas, Kacie and Kylie.
State Resolution K401 mourns and pays tribute to Kaczowka’s service to WWFD and as an Emergency Dispatch Operator for the local 911 center. Kaczowka was a rising star in the department and is survived by his parents, Marian and Janina and brothers, Dariusz and Greg.
State Resolution K400 honors Scardino for his service as a WWFD firefighter and his prior service to the Laurelton Volunteer Fire Department in Irondequoit. Scardino is currently recovering from his injuries with his wife, Karen, and their three children, Christina, Robert and Austin.
State Resolution K399 honors Hofstetter for his 13 years of service to the WWFD and 10 years of service with the Rochester Fire Department. He currently serves on Engine 2 on North Clinton Avenue.
State Resolution K397 also honored several first responders for their actions onDecember 24, 2012. Webster Police Sgt. Kevin Hall and Officers Mark Reed, Shaun Welch, Irondequoit Police Officer Doug Pollock and Greece Police Officer John Ritter – a Webster resident – were all praised for their heroism. Officer Ritter is honored for following fire trucks to the scene and helping close the area off when the shootings took place. Officer Reed is praised for notifying 911 dispatchers of the severity of the situation that day. Sgt. Hall is lauded for setting up a perimeter around the scene with officers Welch and Pollock. The resolution praises them for their extraordinary efforts, which saved countless others.
Johns locally honored West Webster Fire Chief Jim Deisenroth and Police Chief Gerald Pickering, among others, for their bravery and heroism last December. Johns has also drafted a letter of support to US President Barack Obama for the firefighters to be awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom for their efforts.