GREENFIELD — When Hancock County firefighters were deployed to assist victims of Hurricane Sandy in some of the hardest-hit areas of New York, they knew the work would be different from their normal, day-to-day work in the firehouse. But whether they were transporting patients from darkened hospitals in the Bronx or walking through wealthy neighborhoods in Nassau County searching for stranded hangers-on amid wrecked yachts and sports cars, one thing was certain: Residents both felt and appreciated their presence.
“For most of these people, we were the first faces they saw from outside of their neighborhood,” said Beth Haggard, firefighter and paramedic with the Greenfield Fire Department.
Haggard was one of three Hancock County firefighters deployed to assist with search and rescue on Long Island with Indiana Task Force 1, a search and rescue team coordinated through the Federal Emergency Management Agency. Sugar Creek Fire Department’s James Wolsiffer and Brandon Kleine were rescue specialists with the 80-member team.