A New Jersey Fire Department needs the Chivers’ help (28 Photos)

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The night Hurricane Sandy bulldozed New Jersey, the Moonachie (moo-NAH-kee) Fire Department was already being tested to its very limits. So too, was the town levee. Around midnight the firefighters had just returned from a call when one of the guys noticed a white wall of water rushing down East Joseph Street, taking dead aim at the firehouse. The levee had broken, flash-flooding Moonachi and the neighboring town of Little Ferry under 5 feet of water in minutes.

The firefighters immediately scrambled to save the firetrucks. There was already 6 inches of water in the station but the men could hear the water raging past the firehouse right outside. When they opened the garage door, 3 feet of water poured into the firehouse. Somehow the firefighters were able to get two of the five vehicles out of the garage to a hill where they set up a mobile command center.

Safely on high ground, the Moonachie Volunteer Fire Dept. launched a rescue effort that would make both the local and national news. Using only small boats, the remaining two fire trucks, and true grit, they would relocate over 1,500 Moonachie residents over the course of the evening. Not a single life was lost.

When the water finally receded, they returned to their firehouse to assess the damage. Moonachie Road Firehouse was completely destroyed. Water levels at the firehouse had crested at 6 feet. The gear, equipment, radios, vehicles, and tools they desperately needed to help the residents of Moonachie were washed away. Even worse, many of the firefighters' own homes had been destroyed.

Sandy had struck a blow at the very heart of the town: its fire department. With so many residents displaced and in need of help, the MFD knew they had to rebuild and that time was not on their side. Worst of all, the volunteers were out of money. Time to get creative. That's when I received an email from James Soojian. Our initial conversation left me shaking,

"We're working with a minimal amount of equipment. Everything was destroyed. You won't believe it but we're about to get hit with a snowstorm, sustained winds at 40 mph, it doesn't stop. When I came to work today, I didn't even have gloves."

I asked another MFD firefighter, Mark Mulvaney, what they needed most right now.

"We're pretty good on clothes thanks to the Salvation Army and our brothers at the FDNY. What the people need now is food. A lot of them are using gift cards for the local super market. We're handing them out to residents. If somebody has a $50 gift card, they'll break it up into five $10 cards and give them to their neighbors. That's how people are in this town are. In my truck right now I got $250 worth of grocery store gift cards left. After that, I don't know, John, there's nothing."

The lack of equipment has diminished their capacity to help others. The help has lost their ability to help. MFD's call for help has been lost in the cacophony of cries from so many displaced souls on the East Coast in the wake of superstorm Sandy. Here at theCHIVE our firefighters (and our service men and women) comprise the core of theCHIVE community. This year, I've spent countless nights with firefighters across the country and it's not lost on me that theCHIVE has the power to unite the firefighters if needed - and now is that time.

I don't really know how this works, but I need you guys to grab a helmet and pass it around the station for your brothers at the MFD . Our firefighters will lead the charge. Your donation will help both the Moonachie Fire Dept. and the entire Moonachie community. MFD will redistribute a healthy portion of the funds to help the immediate needs of the town.

As y'all know, we're officially launching Chive Charities in the next two weeks with a story nearly one year in the making. I try to space out our charitiable work to avoid taxing theCHIVE community but I won't stare at the pitch as it goes by either. I think we can all agree at this point that the Chivers always swing for the fences. So I'll need your help once again soon, and I hope that's ok.

Right now in a small town in New Jersey, there's a band of Chivers with their backs against a wall. We're going to get their backs today. Chivers, we all know the drill by now. Grab some heavy lumber, and swing for the fence. The goal is $30,000, whatever that means anymore.

Donate to the Moonachie Fire Department RIGHT HERE.

I will continue to update you on the tally right here throughout the day.

UPDATE #1: Cleared $10,000 in a hurry.

UPDATE #2: $16,000 past the halfway point! Before you leave work today, make a donation and enjoy the weekend, Chivers.

UPDATE #3: $20,000

UPDATE #4: $25,000! Home stretch.

UPDATE #5: $30,000 in 2 hours and the he donations appear to be coming in even faster.

UPDATE #6: $37,000

UPDATE #7: $40,000

UPDATE #8: $45,000

UPDATE #9: $50,000

Any amount, no matter how small, is welcome. Donate RIGHT HERE.

The address:
Moonachie Fire Department
Moonachie NJ 07074

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  • namtrok


    • TraumaPA-C

      Asshat, listen closely. The TOWN is funded by the TAXPAYERS. The TAXPAYERS are the volunteer firefighters and citizens of the TOWN and everyone in the TOWN recently found itself under water. These fine men and women not only have their own homes and families to deal with, but also the destruction of equipment and their fire house. On top of that, the business of the fire department (which includes rescue/medical calls, fires, as well as disaster recover) doesn't stop. I could go on, but won't. Now scurry away, back to the hole where you reside. I'm in for $50. $45 from me, and I'll kick in $5 for Mr. Asshat here.

    • JASON


    • Shane

      So I happened to see this comment this morning and as I was sitting in my truck I thought to myself I could not go on with the rest of my day if I didn't ensure I told this guy to eat a bag of dicks and also a big fuck you. Way to take something positive someone is doing and make it into something negative. But seriously from the bottom of my heart fuck you.

  • dan

    KCCO from a fellow new jerseyan.

  • http://bossvidz.blogspot.com Boss

    just 30000?? really ? they can't afford it?!


    you guys are awesome!!!!!myself along with the other members are completly overwelmed by your generosity!!!!! THANK YOU SOOOOOOOOO MUCH!!!!!!!


    • Jon Persons

      Any time brother… Stay safe and keep warm!

  • 2VP Wife

    Stay warm, keep fighting, you are in our hearts. Most of all, remember to Keep Calm and Chive On. This too shall pass.

  • Alicia

    Almost there as we speak. Ready to volunteer and help in any way I can!

  • Geoff

    KCCO! Glad to help my Brother Chivers!!!

  • http://twitter.com/MissShanks @MissShanks

    I'm in a bit of a financial pickle, but I sent everything I had. If I can empty my bank account, you can donate $5. KCCO!

  • BikerGeek

    Things are kinda tight but I can skip a night out to help.

    KCCO, indeed.

  • Dp2592

    Every little bit helps. KCCO brothers!

    From Baltimore City FD

  • Em53

    $20 donated :) Sorry it couldn't be more, paying for some repairs on my place up here in RI after Sandy visited. KCCO :)

  • Kristel

    Awesome !!!! KKCO !!!!

  • https://www.facebook.com/graig.a.leatherbury Graig A. Leatherbury

    $30 from IN… KCCO from a new finder of The Chive

  • tjo55555

    #28 KCCO

  • jonny

    $50.00 ON ITS WAY!! :D

  • mitch

    Money sent. Kcco. Menahga fire dept.

  • Matt (KCCO)

    I'm glad to see so many Chivers helping out. I was lucky where I was that I didn't get it too bad but South of me got crushed. I've made 3 trips down to LBI with some of my friends with boxes of food, clothes and supplies that people need and everytime I drive down there it brings tears to my eyes to see places that I spent so much of my life hanging out at just absolutely destroyed now.

    Our spirit will never be broken and we will Restore the Shore. Jersey Strong. Keep Calm and Chive On.

  • Bnl

    $20. Be safe. Ben, Rehoboth Fire Dept, MA.

  • https://www.facebook.com/adikoni Adi Koni

    Calgary AB Canada Donated. Donation from our nation. KCCO

  • Drew

    Done, let's make sure we see how this helped those brave souls.

  • D Abercrombie

    Donation from across the border in Toronto ON Canada
    From ours to yours

  • VT Surf-N-Turf

    Irene kicked our asses here in Vermont just over a year ago. We came back and so will you. What little I have I've sent. Buck up, boys and girls. It gets better.

  • mike

    done! & DONE!

  • phoneboy

    Many people do not know that over 70% of the fire departments (and many EMS agencies as well) are volunteer, not career/paid. We're the type that jump out of bed at 3am to help our neighbors.

    KCCO, brothers.

  • Irish-Man

    I like #16 the best. To me it says no what my American cousins go through, they will always persevere and make it through. Maybe a little dirty on the outside but inside, pure as light in a dark cave.

    KCCO America

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