Palos Hills, IL – Commissioner Sean M. Morrison joined Fire Chief Michael Schofield of the Orland Fire Protection District on Wednesday to present a fire truck to Moraine Valley Community College (MVCC) and its Fire Science Academy for student training.
Pictured Above: (L-R) Andrew Hufnagl, Coordinator, MVCC Fire Science & Emergency Medical Services, Cook County Commissioner Sean Morrison, 17th District, and Chief Michael Schofield, Orland Fire Protection District, inspect the donated Fire Truck in honor of Daniel Capuano.
The fire truck was dedicated and named in remembrance of the late Chicago Firefighter Daniel Capuano who died in the line of duty last December at a burning warehouse in the city of Chicago’s South Chicago neighborhood. The event also featured a ceremonial procession of fire trucks from several other local suburban fire departments in attendance for the special dedication in honor of Firefighter Capuano.
The fire truck, a 1999 Pierce, could’ve easily been discarded in the usual trade-in or re-sale fashion as in most vehicle transactions. But, Chief Schofield and the Orland Fire Protection District recognized that its fire truck still could provide valuable use and worked with Commissioner Morrison’s 17th District Office to explore possible re-use opportunities. There were many discussions over a period of time as to how and where the fire truck could be utilized, which ultimately led to MVCC’s Fire Science Academy.
“This is where intergovernmental cooperation is vital to the benefit of our communities. And in this very special instance, a direct benefit to the students of the Fire Science Academy who have committed themselves to a potential career as a firefighter, and let us not forget, it is no small commitment they are making,” stated Commissioner Morrison.
Representing MVCC at the dedication ceremony were Dr. Sylvia Jenkins, President, Mr. Joseph Murphy, Chair, Board of Trustees and Mr. Andrew Hufnagl, Coordinator for the Fire Science and Emergency Medical Services Program. The MVCC Fire Science Academy is designed for students who wish to become eligible for initial fire department hiring lists. The academy is approved by the Office of the State Fire Marshal.
“I’m pleased to see that this occasion is very unique as it sends a message of commitment to education as well as an illustration of deep respect and honor for those individuals who dedicate and ultimately give their lives to serve and protect our communities. Daniel Capuano deserves this hero’s honor,” concluded Commissioner Morrison.
There is a long legacy of honoring our fallen firefighters by dedicating fire trucks and other emergency apparatuses’ in their memory. Daniel Capuano was from the Palos/Orland Township community and members of his family still reside in our community to this day. Additionally, prior to his service with the Chicago Fire Department he was a member of the Evergreen Park Fire Department. All of these communities share MVCC as their school for secondary education so it is only fitting that Daniel Capuano is honored in that tradition.