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Op-Ed: A Letter to Maplewood from the SO Rescue Squad

South Orange Rescue Squad President Ken Greene reaches out to his Maplewood counterparts.

(SORS) President Kenneth P. Greene has written this letter to the residents of South Orange and Maplewood to offer the South Orange Rescue Squad's support to Maplewood and thank the residents of both towns for their support of both squads.

In the July 26th edition of the News-Record, I was interviewed regarding the Maplewood First Aid Squad's difficulties.  Upon reading the article, I feel it is necessary to clarify a few items mentioned in the piece. 

The South Orange Rescue Squad has always responded when called upon in Maplewood and continues to do so.  So far this year, it has been nearly 90 times.  In the past five years, we have done so over 850 times.  In that same period, we have not needed or received mutual aid assistance in our town.  Despite each ambulance response costing us in supplies, ambulance loan payment, ambulance maintenance, gas, insurance, building utilities/management and more, we stand ready to assist when requested.

Several months ago, the South Orange Rescue Squad approached ourto request financial assistance to fill our financial shortfall.  The result of which was an arrangement in lieu of financial support where we would receive in-kind assistance.  At the same time, our governing body approached Maplewood Township to assist us, due to the large number of calls into Maplewood.  The idea was summarily dismissed by Maplewood Township officials.

We support the Maplewood First Aid Squad , as their success would benefit us by decreasing our call volume in Maplewood.  The South Orange Rescue Squad leadership has a combined 28 years of experience.  We have reached out to the Maplewood First Aid Squad to offer to assist them in rebuilding their young squad.  We can offer them management strategies that might not have been in place.  In addition, while we are in no position to assist them financially, we have invited them to join us for training classes that we have arranged and paid for.

We stand ready and able to assist in time of need.  We are grateful to the residents of South Orange, Maplewood and the surrounding communities for allowing us to be able to help others. We also acknowledge the hardworking men and women of the Police and Fire departments of South Orange and Maplewood for their continued support.

The South Orange Rescue Squad and the Maplewood First Aid Squad are non-profit organizations that rely on donations from the residents of their respective towns.  To learn more about the squads, visit their websites at www.southorangerescuesquad.org and www.maplewoodfirstaid.org.

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