Helping West Webster Firefightersby Representative Louise McIntosh Slaughter
Posted on 2013-12-12
SLAUGHTER asked and was given permission to address the House
for 1 minute and to revise and extend her remarks.)
Ms. SLAUGHTER. Mr. Speaker, during the early morning hours of
December 24, 2012, the town of West Webster, New York, suffered a
horrible tragedy as a troubled individual set his sister on fire, along
with her house, and then lay in wait until the firefighters arrived. He
shot and killed two firemen and wounded two more.
In the days and weeks that followed, the town of West Webster, the city of Rochester, and our entire region responded with an outpouring of support for the families whose lives had been irrevocably changed because of the attack.
Donations poured into the nonprofit, volunteer West Webster Fire Department in hopes that they would reach the families whose loved ones had been killed. Unfortunately, the fire department was in no position to deal with the complex legalities of delivering these donations to the intended families. As a result, the majority of that money has still not been able to reach the families.
For almost a year now, I have worked with the people of West Webster, particularly West Webster Fire Chief Ken Smith, to finally deliver the charitable donations. And thanks to the generous efforts of Chairman Camp and our allies in the Senate, we will finally be able to help these families today.
The assistance of Chairman Camp and his staff, in particular, has been vital to resolving this issue once and for all. His commitment over the recent months to helping West Webster firefighters and their loved ones is a testament to his dedication to public service.
Today's vote is terribly important to the recipients. There are no words that can heal the wounds that were suffered by Ted Scardino and Joe Hofstetter, and nothing we can do will ever bring back Mike ``Chip'' Chipparini and Tomasz Kaczowka. But passing today's legislation can help to lessen their burden, hopefully to ease their pain, and to prove that even in our darkest hours, our country will be there to support our public servants, their families, and communities in need.