Police & Fire

New Digs, New Address: Summit Volunteer First Aid Squad Officially Opens New Headquarters

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Mayor Ellen Dickson cuts the ribbon joined by, from left, Overlook Medical Center President Alan Leiber, Councilman Albert Dill, Jr., Squad Captain Kari Phair, Councilman Richard Madden, Squad President Ken Herr, and Building Chair Carl Ganger. Credits: Cyndy Reardon
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SUMMIT, NJ - It was only fitting, that in a project embraced by the entire community, more than 300 people would join the Summit Volunteer First Aid Squad to celebrate the Grand Opening of their new headquarters building.

Mayor Ellen Dickson led the ribbon cutting ceremony, assisted by Squad President Ken Herr, Squad Captain Kari Phair, Building Committee Chair Carl Ganger, Common Council members Albert Dill, Jr. and Richard Madden, and Alan Lieber, president of Overlook Medical Center. It was a grant from the Overlook Foundation the helped the Squad close their fundraising gap.

Guests included current and former members, including a few charter members from 1962, donors, designers, builders, members of our Police and Fire departments, neighboring EMS Squads, and Overlook MICU as well as several City officials.
 
 
Although the new headquarters sits on the same lot as the original building, it has been assigned a new street address: 1000 Summit Ave.

The quest for a new squad building began in 2007 with plans to renovate and expand the original 1964 building which had become too small to house the squad’s vehicles and had persistent roof issues. The project stalled and changed direction a few times before concluding that not enough of the existing structure could be saved.
 
After a search for a new building site found no acceptable options, the membership agreed to raze the old building and construct a new one in its place. That plan required a significant fund raising effort as well as an alternate location from which to operate for about a year. The Summit community was very supportive of the capital campaign and local car dealership owner Chip Duane provided a temporary home for the squad for 13 months. 

Last May, a small army of squad volunteers prepared the temporary home at Salerno-Duane for EMS operations, packed equipment and supplies and managed an orderly move. Just 3 weeks ago they repeated that exercise to move the squad into the new permanent home. Nearly all of the furniture for the new building was donated. And several fixtures were either donated or supplied at cost.

The all-volunteer Summit First Aid Squad is always looking for new members to join its ranks. All needed training, uniforms, and equipment is provided. For information, call 908-277-9479, or visit summitems.org.

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