PLAINFIELD, NJ -- At its annual meeting on Tuesday, March 28, UNICO, the Italian American service organization, made a special donation to the Scotch Plains Rescue Squad #scotchplainsrescuesquad at Giovanna's in Plainfield.

The flag artwork was created by Ernie Hernandez in honor of the squad's 80th anniversary this year. Hernandez, a recently retired Scotch Plains police officer, served on the Rescue Squad for decades. He created the piece from old wooden backboard from one of the squad's original ambulances.

The Scotch Plains Rescue Squad welcomes new members as well as those interested in contributing time and talent to support the organization. Individuals can apply for membership at 18 years of age or serve as a cadet at age 16. Those ages 14 or older can serve on the Scotch Plains Rescue Squad Auxiliary. For more information about becoming a Scotch Plains EMT, auxiliary member, volunteer, or to make a donation, contact or call (908) 322-2103 any week night between 6:00 p.m. and 11:00 p.m.

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UNICO is the largest Italian-American service organization in the U.S. The organization's objectives are to promote the image of Italian Americans, serve the community and contribute to charitable, cultural and educational organizations and projects. The Scotch Plains-Fanwood Chapter of UNICO was chartered in 1973. It has raised and donated thousands of dollars annually to support scholarship programs, organizations and individuals in New Jersey. Since 1974, the chapter has co-sponsored the St. Barts/UNICO Italian Festival, which attracts thousands and thousands of visitors over Labor Day weekend. is Scotch Plains-Fanwood’s only free daily paper. Sign up for our daily eNews and follow us on Facebook and twitter @SPF_TAP.