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FDIC 2011: Ray Downey Courage & Valor Award

Wed, 23 Mar 2011|

Mr. Robert Biolchiini, CEO of PennWell Corp. presents the Ray Downey Jr. Courage and Valor Award to FDNY's Firefighter First Class Peter Demontreux .



It's now our honor and our privilege to pay tribute to the memory of our fellow fallen firefighters who were lost one decade ago on 911. By presenting an award that memorializes the name and legacy of Deputy Chief Ray Downey, one of the greatest firefighters and one of the greatest leaders of our time. Please join me in welcoming the chief executive officer of [UNKNOWN] Corporation, the parent company of Fire Engineering and FDIC, Mr. Robert F. Biolchini. [APPLAUSE] >> [UNKNOWN] >> Yes sir. It's always a great pleasure to be here to address you. The before we, I start about the presentation, I want to welcome all of you, who are my fellow Americans and our brothers, the Canadians. And then I'd like to pay particular attention to our friends from India who came all the way over and we are having a show in India and, and with the hope of, bringing the skills of your profession here over to India. And so. Welcome all of you and with that I'll start my little talk. I'm, again, honored to be here with you this morning celebrating the life and legacy of Chief Ray Downey by participation in the 83rd annual. Fire Department Instructors Conference. [COUGH] This year, 2011 marks the 10th anniversary of one of the darkest days in our nation's history. A day of tremendous horror but also a day of exceptional valor. Courage and sacrifice and that sacrifice for almost all firefighters has continued to be the gold standard for your profession, this entire decade. With that thought. In mine. It gives me tremendous honor to introduce you to a very important member of today's audience, the wife of Battalion Chief. Ray Downey, Mrs. Rosalie Downey. Rosalie, please stand up. [CLAPPING]. The, thank you Rosalie and congratulations in the dedication that the Downey Family has toward the FDIC in the fire profession is exemplary for all of us. So. We we appreciate you and honor your husband and who's a wonderful friend and a deep dedicated Christian so, thank you. 2011 marks the 15th anniversary of PennWell and Fire Engineering's direction. Of the FDIC conferences. On behalf of all of us at Penwell and Fire Engineering, welcome to the FDIC 2011 Conference and Exhibition. An event that North American firefighters. Have made the single largest and most important fire fighting show in the world. Thank you for your participation and continuing support. Without you, we would not have a wonderful show and the great safety. Instructors that we have here, so thank you very much. As the CEO of Pennwell, I am very proud, yet really humbled to have so many professionals who put your lives on the line to be here to be able to support and direct the most meaningful fire training. And educational event in the world. To deliver this world-class program, we have many great partners. I cannot possibly name all of them, but please accept my deepest appreciation to all whose selfless efforts. Make this great conference possible. You have made FDIC and event fire fighters around the world need and are proud and eager to support and be a part of. Further, I would like to extend a special thank you. To all of you firefighters here today. Not only your participation during this special week, but also for your dedication to your duties throughout the year. Ensuring safety for your families, your friends, your community. And by placing yourself. In harm's way repeatedly when you are called. This morning I am once again deeply honored to participate in the presentation of the Ray Downey Courage and Valor Award. Chief Ray Downey was an extraordinary man who thought. Who, throughout his life, personified fire service, courage, and valor. Chief Downey was famous for his accomplishments in his service to New York city, as well as his service to Oklahoma city when we had the bombing. Of the [UNKNOWN] center. And the nation, and yet, he was a humble, but passionate professional to the end. Ray was a man of great spirit, it was fun to be around him. he, I met him first time at, at this show many years ago. [SOUND] He was a, a humble who repeated during his illustrious career many times that he was just doing his job. Fire fighting was a job that Chief Downy took it seriously as his earlier commitment. To the United States Marine Corps. It is the same spirit of dedication to duty that this award bearing his name represents. The Courage and Valor Foundation's mission is to help honor an individual firefighter. Each year who's actions reach extraordinary heights. The Courage and Valour Foundation and this perpetual endowment will assist the American fire services in continuing to recognize Chief Downey and those firefighters. Who bravely, whose bravery and actions in the face of certain harm, mirrored his. This morning, we gather to honor another true American hero. F.D.N. Y. Fire Fighter First Grade, Peter. Demantro. Firefighter Demontro recorded acts of bravery under life threatening conditions resulted in saving the lives of two men. Whom without his intervention would have succumbed to a tragic fate. Fighter, firefighter Demontreux's actions reflect on the fire service and its true values. So today, we recognize him individually but in a greater sense his actions all of you are facing in performing each day when you are called. The Courage and Valor Foundation wishes to extend its appreciation and thanks to the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation, represented on stage here today by Director Ray Cernicki and the National Fire Academy Alumni Association's president. Ron Kinnerman is standing here today with us as well. We are grateful to these men and their associations they represent for assisting in the Ray Downey Courage and Valor Award selection process. [COUGH] Now please join me in welcoming FDNY battalion chiefs,. Joe Downey, and Chuck Downey raise sons for the presentation of the 211 Ray Downey courage and valor award. And by the way, they participate in the selection process and it's very, we, we in depth look at. Many, many of who have who have been submitted as candidates and they help tremendously in discerning who has shown the most courage and valor, so I appreciate their taking the time each year to participate in the selection as well. So thank you. [APPLAUSE] Thank you Bob. On behalf of the entire Downy family. Thank for continuing to memorialize the legacy of our father with this tremendously important award. Thank you also, Bob. This year marks the tenth anniversary of the tragic day on 9/11. It is a fitting coincidence that this year's award winner is a member of the FDNY, a firefighter whose heroics resulted in saving two lives. The actions of firefighter Peter Demontreux, whom we honor here this morning. Prove how training and dedication can result in the most important result: saving lives. >> That is right, Chuck. Firefighter Demontreux performed his duty gallantly under adverse and dangerous, life-threatening conditions. By remaining calm and focused, even though he himself was being exposed to extremely high temperatures. And at some time direct flame. His actions in those early morning hours exemplified the highest traditions of the Fire Service. [BLANK_AUDIO] But before we tell Firefighter Demontro's story, we want to express our family's gratitude to the Courage & Valor Foundation. We would also like to thank the Fire Engineering Advisors and Staffers who are continuously on the look out for particularly courageous acts to request nominations. >> Okay. The selection process has several components. Each involving firefighters from across the country. We received reports of unparalleled bravery. And it is always an extremely difficult task to narrow it down to just one fire fighter who's actions rose above all others. >> But in the final analysis again this year, there was one who stood above the rest. One candidate that my brother and I agreed reminded us by his actions of our father, Chief Ray Downey. And now to the 2011 recipient of the Ray Downey Courage and Valor award. In the early morning hours of August 30th, 2010, ladder 132 received a phone alarm reporting a structural fire at 175 Putnam Avenue in Brooklyn. While in route, Ladder 132 received several reports of multiple people trapped throughout the building. Engine 235 arrived first and transmitted 10-75 for a fire in a four-story brownstone. Ladder 132 personnel arrived as the first due truck and were met with heavy fire at the front door, in the hallway, and up the stairway to the third floor preventing their entry into a hose line could be put into place. >> As Ladder 132's inside team waited on the front steps for a hose line,. Other members [INAUDIBLE] 132 were setting up an area for rescue of a man who was at the front window of the third floor with heavy smoke pushing out all around him. Fire fighter [UNKNOWN] climbed the aerial and pulled Mr. [UNKNOWN] from the window. Fire fighter [UNKNOWN] was told by Mr. Hal that his friend was still inside the burning apartment. Ladder 132 is inside team, was still waiting for a hoseline and unable to enter the stairwell. Fire fighter Del Montro entered the third floor window via the aerial ladder and began his search. Fire fighter Del Montro was able to search the front room but was forced to retreat back to the window because of the high heat condition. And a zero visibility. Fire fighter demise are rescue too. On the latter that vented the windows in the front of the apartment to allow some of the blistering heat and smoke to scape. This allow fire fighter demantro to resume his search. With conditions improve slightly, he was able to make his way to the [UNKNOWN] of the apartment. When firefighter Demontro reached the rear he discovered Mr. Manzoni hanging out a rear window to escape the heat. Realizing that there were no fire escapes supportable ladders in the rear, firefighter Demontro without regard to his own safety determined that the only way out was through the window in which he came in. Through high heat and zero visibility, firefighter Dematro led Mr. Mantoni back toward the front window. When they were halfway through the apartment the entire third floor exploded into flames engulfing both men and setting them ablaze, firefighter Myers of rescue 2, still on the aerial at the window. Immediately transmitted a may day, believing that firefighter Demantro and a victim could be lost in the explosion of fire. Demonstrating incredible bravery and selflessness, firefighter Demantro, now himself on fire, made a conscious and calculated decision. That he would not leave Mr. Mantoni behind. Although he now found himself in a fully, in a fully involved room at extreme personal risk he stayed with Mr. Mantoni and continued to assist him to the window and the aerial ladder device for an escape. When they reached that window, firefighter Demontreux again displayed incredible selflessness and bravery by resisting the urge to save himself first. Ignoring his immediate personal danger, intense heat, extreme personal risk, he pushed Mr. Mantony out of the window and onto Ladder 132's. Aerial ladder before diving out the window onto the ladder himself. >> Firefighters from engine 219 were on the street below with a charged hose line. Seeing firefighter Demontreux and Mr. Mantany exiting on the ladder on fire, they opened up their hand line on the two men in an attempt to extinguish the flames. Firefighters on ladder 132 assisted Firefighter Demrcio and Mister Mantoni down the ladder to a waiting medical assistance. Mister Mantoni received burns over 50% of his body and continues with long term hospital, oh that's a tough one, hospitalization. A little tongue tied there. Fire Fighter De Montrose suffered first and second degree burns to his face and back. Upon inspection of our fire fighter De Montrose personal protective equipment was condemned for extreme amount of fire damage it sustained in the rescue. >> On the morning of August 30th, 2010. Firefighter Demantro displayed great courage, determination and tenacity in the performance of this rescue. If not for the heroic actions of firefighter Demantro, Mr. Montoni would have faced certain death. Firefighter Demontro's dedication and aggressive actions in saving the lives of another are in the highest tradition of FDNY. He demonstrated unfaltering focus. While being engulfed in punishing flash over conditions, and remain committed to saving the life of Mr. Montony. Firefighter Demontros' unfaltering dedication, despite the intense heat. Despite pain and risk to himself. Exemplifies the highest tradition of the fire service. Firefighter Demontro's presence of mind, selflessness, and ability to maintain his awareness under extremely stressful and personal, personally damage, da da, dangerous circumstances made him. A hero. Peter Dumantro has been a fire fighter with the FDNY for 9 years. He is currently working in Brooklyn on ladder 132. His brother is also a member for FNDY, Lieutenant Louis Dumantro and he is assigned to engine 154. Peter resides in Staten Island, and his wife Gena and their four children Peter Jr., Allison, Evelyn, and Gwyneth. For his extraordinary courage and valor, PennWell and Fire Engineering are honored to present firefighter Peter Demontro. With the 211 Ray Downey Courage and Valor Award. Along with a check for $35,000 from the Fire Engineering Courage and Valor Foundation. It gives me great pleasure to introduce to you our awardees for 2011. FDNY fire fighter Peter Demontreux. [APPLAUSE] {MUSIC] [MUSIC] [BLANK_AUDIO] Come on, Gina. Come on [CLAPPING] His wife, ladies and gentlemen. [CLAPPING]

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