The Bridgehampton Fire Department’s EMS Company recently held a brunch to honor its long line of captains who served, and to unveil a plaque in their honor.
Approximately 60 people attended the festive brunch at the firehouse on Sunday, December 4, to recognize the 23 leaders of the ambulance service since 1946, when it was first formed as a squad within the department.
Organizers did their best to track down families of each captain. Those in attendance included the family of Arthur Halsey, the first captain from 1946 to 1949, and the family of Bill Crowley, the captain from 1960 to 1961, during which time it became the Ambulance Company.
Beryl “Ben” Buchholtz, the first female member of the department, helped unveil the plaque. An ICU nurse at Southampton Hospital, she joined her husband, the late Walter Buchholz, captain from 1971-1972, in service. Her tenure as captain from 1981 to 1995 — 14 years — remains the longest stint as captain.
A slideshow of photographs was shown, current members served up food and each name on the plaque was remembered during a presentation.
Flowers were given to the captains or their families. Ex-captains Liz Grodski, the second longest serving captain from 1996 to 2005, Judy Edwards, Stacy Ludlow and John N. White received the flowers themselves.
The family of Robert C. Hallock Sr., the captain in 1966 as well as the fire chef in 1972, were also in attendance, including EMS Company member and EMT Robin Murphy, who organized the luncheon.
Murphy gifted the current captain, Taylor K. Vecsey, the editor of Behind The Hedges at Dan’s Papers, a bouquet in recognition of her five years of leadership.
The plaque will be hung in the Fire Department meeting room and names added as the years go on.