Manhattan Fire Protection District


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Signed on June 02, 2023 at 2:34 PM
Name: Joe Fijalkowski
Rank/Title: Chief
Location: Hickory Hills, IL

When I joined RPFD in 1966 we were all volunteers including Chief Bob Rasch. In 1970 Chief Rasch was hired full-time. During the next year the Trustees appointed 3 Commissioners. Then in 1971 the Commissioners hired the first 3 full-time men. We worked straight days, because it was hard to get volunteers during the day. After several years the full-time staff was increased so that we could work the present 24/48 with the help of Paid On Call personnel. In 1990 I was appointed Chief when Chief Rasch retired and moved to Michigan. During my time, and through the dedication of our personnel, we were able to get our ISO class down to a 3. Since my retirement in 2001 I have seen the Fire District get modernized in the tech field, continue to be an outstanding EMS dept., and have equipped the dept. with state of the art apparatus. This is all being done through a smooth relationship of full-time and part-time personnel. Am I proud of RP? You bet!

Signed on March 31, 2019 at 8:31 AM
Name: Matthew Neveu
Rank/Title: P.O.C Firefighter
Location: Houston, Texas

I really miss the days at RP. Back in the 80's before the humongous building that is there now. Starting out with Chief Rasch and then Chief Fijalkowski (my wife called him Chief "Find Your House Keys"). I am really proud to have been a member of the department. They were always pushing the education, Firefighter I and II, EMT/a, Glow Worm for hazmat ... I still have all of those certificates. What a great time that was. Came at a time when I really needed the structure. Thanks RP for really being there for me.

Signed on February 27, 2016 at 6:46 PM
Name: Adam Kuyawa
Rank/Title: Firefighter/Paramedic 1992-2012ish
Location: Plainfield

I can't believe I have been gone this long already! Thankfully I still talk to some of you occasionally. Thank god for Facebook!! :) I wish I had more free time to stop in. I was just thinking it would be great to be able to see pictures of the current Duty crew and Hell possibly crews from the past!! This place changed my life and I will forever think of RP as part of my family!
PS the math test at the end sucks!!

Signed on December 02, 2015 at 3:10 PM
Name: Ed Vasil
Rank/Title: Shift Commander (retired 2004)
Location: Braidwood Illinois

Sitting here reminiscing of the "Good Old Days" working with many of the names I see on the list below. RPFD was one great place to work and I couldn't have asked for a better bunch of guys and girls to call my second family! After 30 years of "doin' it" I sure do miss the place and I've been out of there for 12 yrs. I'm so glad to see that the Justice merge finally took place and I'm happy to see that all the young guys finally got promoted once the old farts finally retired (and you guys know who I'm talking about!!! :) I wish safety upon all you HERO'S and think about you every time I hear a siren. God bless you all for the great job you do every day especially in this very troubling time.

Signed on March 22, 2015 at 8:01 PM
Name: Ken Zarnecki

Wow what a great web site. Willy I have a line on the guy who has 302, I am trying now to get a chance to see it. I was a member of Roberts Park from 1984 to 1989 and attribute my current career to the training and opportunity I received from RP. Thank You! To the guys who are there now, be safe brothers and take care of each other every day.

Signed on April 21, 2014 at 1:56 PM
Name: Lowell Wilkins
Rank/Title: Retired firefighter paramedic.
Location: Crown point, Indiana

The website looks beautiful. Maybe a suggestion put one or two of the old pieces in like Old 305 or 304 just for us old guys or maybe 302 would be the best picture of all, for those of you that are not for me with the history of the department, 302 was the first fire engine of district ever bought brand-new. It was a 1949, Mac pumper boy, what a brute. It had an in-line six cylinder gas engine
no power steering, no power brakes, as the young firefighter in the late 70s, part of a rite of passage was being able to pump and drive this vehicle. They said you were a real Engineer When You Could Pump 302!
I was proud to be a member of the fire district for over 30 years and are moments in time when I wish I was still there for there is no place like it in the world. The camaraderie Fellowship and brotherhood that was shared by me and all the others that were there. Both full-time and paid on-call so thank you RP and may the good Lord protect us
thank you, Lowell Wilkins

Signed on March 03, 2014 at 1:11 PM
Name: Lynn Ceraulo
Location: United States

I would like to correct my previous email. I wanted to thank the Justice Police Department for their assistance, at the fire this past Saturday.

I apologize for the error.

Signed on March 03, 2014 at 12:51 PM
Name: Lynn Ceraulo
Location: United States

I want to personally thank you, the Hodgkins Police Department, and everyone involved with saving our building (on Blackstone), this past Saturday afternoon. More important, thanks for saving lives. Everyone was safe, and unhurt. This outcome could have been so much worse if not for your outstanding work.

Stay safe and God Bless!

Signed on August 30, 2013 at 10:39 PM
Name: Jess Waynick
Rank/Title: Fireman/Capt. & Trustee
Location: Hendersonville, Tn 37075

I proudly served with the Roberts Park Fire Department - I lived across the street and enjoyed the services that we provided. I served from 1956 thru 1968. During this time our chiefs were Paul Crider, Jim Gibbons, Stan Gozdal, George Borre, Ernie Judd & Bob Rasch.

Signed on July 24, 2013 at 11:57 PM
Name: Roger Parker
Rank/Title: Earl's boy
Location: Alabama

Thanks for the great father Earl Parker was Captain in the 60's. Always enjoyed the Christmas party and the pool table in the old station. Lived 3 doors from the old station & I can still hear the old siren going off and running to the front yard to see dad behind the wheel of 302 or 307 as it roared out the door and past our house. Arnold Parker was my uncle & assistant chief at that time. I loved hanging around the station with dad as a kid...thanks for the great memories

Signed on July 10, 2013 at 6:23 AM
Name: Sister Bonnie Boilini
Location: Chicago

I want to thank each of you who responded to my car accident on Friday, July 5, 2013. While all bruised up, thanks to your swift and compassionate care I will be o.k.
Now to hope that witnesses come forward to tell the truth of what they saw.
Thanks again.

Signed on June 03, 2013 at 3:45 PM
Name: Sandy Donigain
Rank/Title: EMS Coordinator
Location: Gottlieb Hospital, Melrose Park, IL

Nice looking website!

Signed on March 29, 2013 at 1:50 PM
Name: Craig Jacobus
Rank/Title: FF/PM/Physician
Location: Nebraska

What a trip down memory lane. I was FF/PM 24 in 1976 and was a proud member of the dept under Chief Rasch, with A/C Fiji and Paul P, Billy D, Tommy Janes, my good friend Ed Vasil, Pat, John, and the rest of the 70-80's crew. While on "sleeper shift" I was able to complete college and then on grad school while at RPFPD. I started in old 306, moved to the modular and graduated from Ingalls in 77. What a trip to see the new equipment. I wish you ALL the very best of safety and hope that you too will look back 35+ years at the great times at "RP'. Remembering the call sign KSD 738 and all the foundation RP gave me to continue to be a great firefighter/paramedic. RPFPD gave us all a wonderful foundation to go anywhere we wanted to. Some to CFD, others around the US, others to different areas of medical care...but I got bit by the FD/EMS bug at RP and have been infected ever since......great stuff.
Best to you all,
Craig Jacobus; D.C.; FFII/NREMT-P/ EMSI
Schuyler Fire Department, Schuyler, NE

Signed on December 16, 2012 at 1:37 PM
Name: Jen Ciolino
Location: Hickory Hills

Thank you so much for the annual Santa run. It is such a wonderful tradition, and we look forward to it every year! Our three little ones we so thrilled when Santa drove by and a fireman gave them candy canes. THANK YOU!!!

Signed on July 06, 2012 at 11:42 PM
Name: William F. Leipart II (Bill)
Location: Mesa, Arizona

I'm very happy My Father was one of our first members. Cheers!

Signed on July 06, 2012 at 9:31 AM
Name: Mike Czepiel
Rank/Title: FF
Location: Texas

i was proud to have been a member of RPFPD in 74-75 before joining the Air Force and leaving Illinois. Good to see the pictures and see that Justice VFD and RP finally combined. take care and keep up the good work.

Signed on January 16, 2012 at 11:52 AM
Name: Kevin Jackson
Rank/Title: SFC US Army
Location: Afghan

Congratulation to Jeff onbecoming Fire Chief. Miss the guys from RFPD. Kevin Tracy, Willie, Vas, Jeff Dees. Just wanted to say hello and yall keep safe. God Bless

Signed on November 01, 2011 at 4:14 AM
Name: Jerry Palm
Rank/Title: F/F /Engineer/Lieutenant 1988-2000
Location: Braidwood,Illinois

Proud to have served the Department and Community

Signed on September 03, 2011 at 1:54 PM
Name: Thomas Janes
Rank/Title: FF thurAssistant Chief
Location: Justice, Illinois

It was a great honor to have been a part of the History of the Roberts Park Fire Protection District, I will always remember the men and women of the district.

Signed on August 12, 2011 at 10:52 PM
Name: Marc Findlay
Rank/Title: Paramedic
Location: Plainfield Illinois

Great Site!!!! Nice Ladder Truck!!! Stay Safe!!!!

Signed on March 30, 2011 at 9:18 PM
Name: Martin
Web Address:
Location: Justice, IL

Keep up the good job, like awlays I will be taking pictures for my website and making videos for youtube (martintheman16). One day I will work for Roberts Park, I cannot wait until that day when I start.

Signed on March 15, 2011 at 11:17 AM
Name: Chuck
Web Address:
Location: Connecticut

Very nice site. Keep up the great work!

Signed on March 11, 2011 at 3:12 PM
Name: Ken Cerney
Rank/Title: Fire Inspector
Location: Blue River,Wisconsin

A lot has changed since I left in 1985. I was happy to see the pictures of the old equipment. Brings back a lot of memories.

Signed on March 02, 2011 at 6:30 PM
Name: Bradley Huizenga
Rank/Title: lieutenant 1973 -74
Location: pacific northwest

Just wanted to say hi to everyone, miss all the old guys, glad to see the House is still up and running, She was brand new when I left.

Signed on January 21, 2011 at 3:38 PM
Rank/Title: FORMER MEMBER M.V.F.D. CO. 2
Location: USA

Great start to a new website, hope you all continue to add to it, will check back from time to time. Glad you decided to go with the best Firehouse Solutions

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