As both a student and an instructor, Joseph P. DiBernardo knew how important training was to being a better firefighter. Even his training company motto, “experience is paramount” reflected this approach to learning. In this same spirit, students from across the country and some of the top fire service instructors will come together for two days of learning in memory of Lt. Joseph P. DiBernardo, “Joey D,” of FDNY and the Setauket Fire Department. The 2nd Annual Lt. Joseph P. DiBernardo Memorial Foundation Seminar will be held on May 16 – 17, 2014 at the Hyatt Regency Long Island and will support the work of the Lt. Joseph P. DiBernardo Foundation which works to provide training and funding for life safety rope systems to fire departments in need.
Chief Joseph DiBernardo, Joey’s dad and Foundation president remembers, “The thing Joey loved most in the world was going to fires; his next passion was training firefighters.” The Lt. Joseph P. DiBernardo Memorial Foundation, started in Joey’s memory, carries on his legacy by training firefighters and providing funds to purchase life safety rope systems to fire departments.
In 2013, the first annual seminar trained 200 firefighters on various topics focusing on the safety and proficiency in their duties. Instructor, FDNY Battalion Chief (Ret.) John Salka recalls the event, “I was so honored last year to be asked to present at the first Joey D Foundation seminar. I was the engine captain where young Joey was assigned as a probie; from day one it was obvious he was something special. He would be so proud to see what the Foundation that bears his name is accomplishing. They are providing world class training to seminar attendees, bail-out ropes for departments that can’t afford to buy them on their own, and have future plans to help fire departments that have suffered losses to get back on their feet. I’m proud to have worked with both Joey and Chief DiBernardo and I look forward to seeing you at this year’s seminar.”
After a successful 2013 seminar, a meet and greet component was added to the 2014 event so students could talk with some of the most experienced firefighters and fire officers in the business and ask questions that are important to them. A second day of classroom training features: Pride and Ownership: The Love of the Job, by Chief Rick Lasky; Firefighter & Officer Survival: Simple Fires with Complicated Results, by Chief Billy Goldfeder; Utility Emergency Tactics, by Battalion Chief Frank Montagna; and Man vs. Machine Incidents, by Lt. Mark Gregory.
When you sign up for this year’s seminar you’re not only improving yourself, you’re also helping to remember a fallen brother and helping to provide life-saving training and equipment to other firefighters. “Joey will never be forgotten as long his Foundation exists. Though he is no longer with us, he will still go on teaching and training firefighters through the support that this Foundation receives from firefighters across the country. Those who attend bring that knowledge home and pass it on to their fellow firefighters to further enhance their safety,” explains Chief DiBernardo.
Chief DiBernardo notes that “Joey’s motto was, ‘Stay safe brothers.’” Those who carry out the important work of the Foundation, in honor of Joey and his love for the fire service, are dedicated to Joey’s goal of keeping firefighters safe. Please help us honor Joey and support the mission of the Foundation to help firefighters “stay safe.” Don’t miss this opportunity to gain from the experience of veteran firefighters and learn things to make you the best firefighter that you can be. Visit joeydfoundation.org/seminars/seminar-2014 to sign up for the 2014 seminar or E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.