This is our latest incoming mail:   To go to Old Mail click here

9/11/2017 from Ralph Johnson:


     Something like this happened to me. We were called to a house fire, a crew member, Mark Arganbright and myself went inside. We found two German Shepherds in heavy smoke. One was under the dining room table, I grabbed its collar and drug it to the front door and it ran out. The other we found was lying on the floor overcome by smoke. We dragged that one to the back yard and used our face masks from our back packs and did CPR and the air from our masks. In a short time, the dog came too, of course it was scared to death so it tried to bite Mark. No one was hurt, we held the dog down until he was aware of his surroundings and calmed down.


The Kiss


She is pregnanat;


He had just saved her from a fire in her house, rescuing her by carrying her out of the house into her front yard, while he contin ued to fight the fire.


When he finally got done putting the fire out, he sat down to catch his breath abnd rest.


A photographer from the Chartlotte, North Carolina nespaper, noticed her in the distance looking at the fireman.


He saw her walking straight toward the fireman and wondered what she was going to do.


As he raised his camera, she came up to the tired man who had saved her life and the lives of her babies and kissed him just as the photographer snapped this photograph.


8/31/2017 from Ray Brant:


I remember when you started the Bresnan with its “Distributor” logo….What a great idea. You are a symbol of dedication to all of us.

We all will miss the connection you have provided to all the members of the Alameda County Fire Department and those of us who preceded ACFD.

Let's hope Brian can find someone to keep the “Tradition” alive.

Thank all of our brothers and sisters retired and active for their dedicated service.

Ray Brant
SLFD Retired


Please pass on to all retirees and Dept personnel that Carlos “Carl” Scallon passed away today in a Modesto hospital from complications of COPD. Carl was a retired Captain of the Eden Consolidated Fire Protection District (now ACFD). He started as a volunteer with the San Lorenzo Village Fire Dept and retired from ECFPD at age 65. He was 91 when he passed. I will advise further of any services.


John Dailey

This morning I received the following information from Carol Leonesio, the wife of former Newark Fire Chief Dennis Leonesio (retired in 1991):


Newark Fire Chief Dennis Leonesio passed away Saturday, April 1, 2017. They are having services for Chief Leonesio on Monday, April 17, 2017. Below is the information:

10:00 am Rosary at the Fry Memorial Chapel, 550 S. Central Avenue, Tracy, CA 95376 (209/836-1970)

11:00 am Services at St. Bernard's Catholic Church, 165 W. Eaton Avenue, Tracy, CA 95376 (209/835-4560)

Reception following services at Holy Family Center, 12100 Valpico Road, Tracy, CA 95377 (209/835-4560)


Below is the home address for the Leonesio Family:

31919 South Bird Road

Tracy, CA 95304

Carole's email:


Wife: Carole

Children: Mike, Ann, Terri, Kathy, Steve and Kenny

Frank Giuntoli Passes

Dear Rich,

Thank you for your call this morning and attached is the photo of Frank and the text for his Obituary. Please feel free to edit if needed for space.



Frank Peter Giuntoli, age 91 died Thursday March 23 2017, peacefully at home after a brief illness. The memorial service will be held on Friday March 31 at Salas Brothers Mortuary 419 Scenic Dr. Modesto, 95350.  Frank and his wife Millie lived in Modesto for the last 17 years and were both California natives. Frank is first generation Italian American who grew up in the farming community of Madera CA and served in the U.S.Navy in WWII. He retired from the Castro Valley Fire Dept. after 25 years of service.  He was a loving husband to his wife Millie, and was a devoted father to Daughters Sharon (husband Victor Moreno), and Lisa Schwarz and son Gary (wife Candace Giuntoli) two step-daughters, Marjie Eakin-Petty, Glenda Eakin and five grandchildren. and one great granddaughter. He will be greatly missed.



Thank you,

Marjie Eakin-Petty for Millie Giuntoli


Rich, my name is James Ellstrom I am a Firefighter for the City of Glendale Arizona Local #493. I am contacting you in regards to my Brother in Laws Father Frank Giuntoli he passed away this week and they are having Services for him this Friday March 31st @ 1pm @ Salas Brother Funeral Chapel 419 Scenic Drive Modesto, California I am informing you in case any of his comrades Brother & Sisters of your organization are interested also so you can pass on to your Firefighters Union hopefully they can send flowers.  I know he served Castro Valleys a Firefighter from July 1957- August 1982. His Grandson Jacob Giuntoli is also a Firefighter in Glendale Arizona, I know it would mean a lot to the family if flowers or a card where sent.




James Ellstrom



Hearing the sad news about Frank Guintoli yesterday made me think about the years I worked with Frank and brought back some of my favorite Fire Department memories.  In 1974, at the beginning of my third year with CVFD I was transferred to the "old" Station two located at the corner of Redwood Rd. and Heyer Ave.  Legend,  Ray Machado, was the Captain and Frank Guintoli was the Engineer.  We used to watch the Friday night High School football games from atop the hose tower which gave a perfect view of the field. 

Frank was a WWII Navy Veteran.  He loved Millie, Golf,  Humphrey Bogart movies and, Glen Miller.  He told great stories about the war years and especially good stories about the early years in Castro Valley Fire Department.

I liked Frank.  He was a good man.  A good Father.  A good Fireman.  And not a bad Golfer.

I'm sorry I will not be able to attend the service in Modesto this Friday but, my thoughts will be with the family.  Frank lived a good, full life.  Even so, I will miss him.      


Dave Tibbets



I have gotten some nice emails after I announced that I want to retire from the Bresnan:




Thank you for all of the years to have kept us informed, entertained and connected to one another. 

I hope someone who carries the same passion you have had will carry on the Bresnan. I would be sad to see it go away.

I however understand your desire to pass it along. 

Be well




Rich, I am surprised you hung in there so long. I retired almost 16 years ago and have been fighting , at one time or another the State, the Courts, PERS, worthless lawyers, Supreme court judges all the way up to the California Supreme court, Congressmen and most recently the Brand new CEO of CalPERS. The one thing they all have in common is NOBODY cares. I had my doctor at Stanford tell me that sometimes you need you let principle go, I had to disagree with him.


I have tried through the union reps to prepare them for things I have learned the hard way and am still fighting for. Call me stupid but I do believe in principles!! I loved my job and wished I had retired in one piece. But the guys that came after us need to keep in mind, if your are injured or exposed to toxics the county will drop you like a hot rock.


We all know everyone is out for themselves. The administration is no different, when they don’t have anyone to chew on, they WILL turn on each other (that has been proven)


Any way I am proud of my 32 years and loved every minute of it. I do get my point across now and then.


I don’t know if you were in PERS Long term care. I starting paying for coverage for my wife and myself when I turned 45, it was a good plan until I received a letter from CalPERS that if I did not reduce my coverage my premium would be raised 80%. I contacted PERS and told them it was like Social Security, pay for the coverage and it is not there when you need it.


I am sending a copy to Ryan,I want to let him know that if anyone is working a side job, don’t pay an social  security, when you retire you will find out you are not going to collect on it, trust me I know.


Ralph Johnson


P.S. Ryan, all I have received from the new CEO of PERS is the return receipt that it was received. It seems the NEW one doesn’t care either?





Hi Rich,

It's always great seeing or hearing from you! I've got nothing but wonderful memories of all the time we spent together in the firehouse, on calls, and different events during those years. You're an amazing person and in turn have influenced me positively throughout my life. I'm in my ninth year of retirement now and having the time of my life. We had many a conversation during our time together and as you know my plan was always to close that chapter of my life at retirement, not look back, and move on. Like I often quipped "No, I'm not going to run for something,  I'm going to run from something!" So far, so good! 


As far as the Bresnan goes you've worked tirelessly and at times, thanklessly, in putting out the newsletter. You have done an outstanding job! Far and away exceeding anyone else's abilities or expectations! If someone steps up to take it over, great. If not, pick a date, retire, and don't look back.  Life is too short not to! We are all forever grateful for the effort you put forth!


I do hope that our paths cross again soon, I'll be looking forward to it for sure! I wish you, Debra, and your entire family all the best our universe has to offer.

With much love, Brian 


Harold Arthur McCormick

Jan.4,1924-Dec.28, 2016

Resident of Castro Valley

Harold Arthur McCormick “Mac” passed away peacefully at home on Dec 28 2016 at the age of 92. He was born in Gridley, Kansas on Jan 4 1924 to Harold McCormick & Eunice Hamilton. The family moved to El Cerrito, CA and Mac went to Berkeley High. He joined the Navy when he finished high school. He met his beautiful wife Beverly at Berkeley High and moved to Castro Valley and raised 6 children. He was in the military for 38 years. In the Navy, he was a Chief Boatswain Mate & served in the Pacific during WW2 on the Pennsylvania and the Prince William.

After discharge from the Navy, he was in the Merchant Marines for 5 years. He later joined the Navy Reserve & also worked on the fire tug boats in the San Francisco Bay.

Mac then became a fireman in San Leandro for 26 years.

He was a member of the Golden Gate Water Ski Club and water skied in the bay consecutively on New Year’s Day for 40 years with the club. After retiring Mac and Bev traveled around the world until Beverly’s death in 2003. He continued to be a member of the National Chief Petty Officers Assoc. He is survived by his sons: Douglas McCormick and wife Marianne and children Christine, Brandon, Shelby, Lindsay(deceased). Stephen McCormick, and friend Sue Imbrulia and his children: Jim, Charlotte and Megan. Dan McCormick and his wife Mary O’Brien. Daughters: Sandra McCormick Brown. Tena Engel and her husband Anthony children Jared and Kelsey. Great grandchildren and great great grandchildren. Mac was a wonderful father, husband and friend. His Irish spirit and smiles shall be missed. He was a great Mate! The McCormick family would like to thank Angel Hospice and home helpers for their compassion and professional care to our father.





I remember how he liked to wear his pajamas with the little hearts on them, and how he liked to take a “nap” in the back of his truck by the shop door; that way he never missed a call. Also his own story of how he was painting his home’s exterior on a ladder, then lost his balance as he reached for a tool

or something, and fell backwards onto the ground. Next his wife looks out the window and remarks words something like: “oh Mac is sleeping on the lawn”, not knowing that he was briefly knocked out! He even thought it was funny!

I’ll miss him.





I remember the one where he used his head for a chock block.

I’ll miss him to.


FERG <><



1/18/2017 from Ryan:

Hi Again Rich,


Here is more info and two attachments that may be added to the Bresnan Distributor as you see fit.  Thank you for your helping getting the word out.


Sorry for all the confusion with the monthly medical reimbursement checks.  Some were due secondary refund checks due to an data entry mistake by the ACFD Finance Department while many others saw an decrease in the January 2017 medical reimbursement amount and are not due refund checks.  We added a 'Medical' section under the Docs & Forms section with yearly rates dating back to 2013 for members to compare and double-check if they are due a refund check for January 2017 or not. 

Please contact myself if you need further assistance at or 707-980-2006 cell. 


Ryan Nishimoto, Advisory Committee Chairperson

Alameda County Fire Fighters Association

International Association of Fire Fighters, Local #55

707-980-2006 cell


Ryan Nishimoto

ACFFA IAFF L55 - Advisory Committee Chairperson


2016 file

2017 file

11/4/2016 from Frank Giuntoli: (after receiving the current newsletter)


Thanks a lot for the pictures of the old guys.  Rich I knew some of them.


                                             Great Job Rich.


9/13/2016 from Norm Silva:

Joe Silva - Died 9/8/2016 at 92 years.

Joe started with Cherryland Fire Dept. Also worked with Eden Fire.

I just got a call from his brother, Norm Silva, letting me know that he passed.

I don’t know how many of us remember that far back, but if you have any memories to share about Joe, please send them to me.

FERG <><




8/12/2016 from Ryan Nishimoto:

Hi Rich,


Here's more retiree info that may be posted to the Bresnan Distributor if you wish:


On September 27th from 12pm to 1:30pm BCN will be holding a short seminar with a question and answer session at Fire Admin in Dublin.  All topics are open for the Q&A, but the seminar will be based on planning for retirement.  If any recently retired members would like to attend to assist with the Q&A session and be available to let soon-to-be-retirees know what to expect upon retiring, please contact me at 707-980-2006 or  Your firsthand accounts would be greatly appreciated.



Ryan Nishimoto, Advisory Committee Chairperson

Alameda County Fire Fighters Association

International Association of Fire Fighters, Local #55

707-980-2006 cell

Ryan Nishimoto
ACFFA IAFF L55 - Advisory Committee Chairperson


Robert Bruce

("Bob") Waberski

Resident of Castro Valley

Passed away July 28, 2016 at age 79. A native of Newark, New Jersey, Bob was the youngest child of Benedict and Bertha Bruce Waberski. Bob was preceded in death by his beloved sister Beatrice Brandon and Brother Ben Waberski.

Bob leaves behind daughter Theresa Railsback (Troy). His pride and joy were grandson Brandon Batteate, his wife Brittany and two great-grandson's Scott and Kyle Batteate, all of Livermore.

He also leaves behind brother-in-law John Brandon of Santa Rosa, plus many nieces and nephews.

Bob leaves behind his faithful pet companion – his Boston terrier, "Muggsy."

Bob joined the Castro Valley Fire Department in 1959 and worked his way up the ranks until his retirement in 1993 when he was serving as Fire Chief. He was dedicated to the fire department and wanted nothing but the best for the department and for the community he served.

For many years Bob was an active member of the Rotary Club of Castro Valley, He served as president and secretary. Bob led a Group Study Exchange Team (GSE) to Denmark. He spearheaded the donation of a fire truck to a town in Mexico. Bob traveled all over the world representing Rotary with his dear friends Dwight and Barbara Perry and his companion of over 20 years Faye Hahn.

In his retirement years Bob enjoyed fishing (especially trips to British Columbia). He loved visiting Lake Tahoe and Mexico. Bob had many adventures on his houseboat and looked forward to Friday lunches at Krayon's.

Bob was a member of the Rowell Ranch Rodeo advisory committee. He was a member at Transfiguration Church where he donated his time.

Bob was very handy with tools and enjoyed woodworking. He was always ready to help neighbors with projects or repairs.

Bob enjoyed life. His generous, loving spirit will be missed.

In lieu of flowers donations may be made to The Rotary Club of Castro Valley Endowment, PO Box 2117, Castro Valley, CA. Donations can also be made to Alameda County Junior Livestock Auction Boosters, PO Box 3176, Livermore, CA 94551.

Hi Rich,


We have completed our first quarter under the new dental insurance through Premier Access.  I'll be meeting with the benefits brokers and Premier Access soon to discuss the plan.  Please pass along any positive of negative feedback with the plan to me on the union message board or to my email address,

Thank You,

Ryan Nishimoto


Whenever the next posting is made to the Bresnan Distributor, can you please add the following?


A mistake was made on the recent monthly dues bill (July-December).  The billed amount was for only three months and should have been for six.  Another bill is being sent out with the corrected amount.  If you already paid, you only need to send in another check for the difference.  Sorry for the inconvenience.  Please contact me if you have any questions.


Ryan Nishimoto, Advisory Committee Chairperson

Alameda County Fire Fighters Association

International Association of Fire Fighters, Local #55

707-980-2006 cell


Thank You,


Ryan Nishimoto

ACFFA IAFF L55 - Advisory Committee Chairperson


7/2/2016 from Terry Givens:


Thanks for all your hard work.  I appreciate your efforts in keeping us all up to date.

Terry Givens

5/2/2016 from Heather Marques:

Hi there!
Thanks for your interest in our book and I hope you will love it.
Please send a check or $22 cash to Engine 19C attn. Heather Marques
Write check to ACFFA.
All proceeds will be going to charity: Local 55 Widow and Orphans Fund.
Thanks for your support!
FS 19’s address is FS 19 One Cyclotron Road #48 Berkeley 94720


Hello ACFD,

The ACFD Historical Committee is proud to announce that the our County Fire History book has gone to print!

The book is published by Arcadia Publishing/The History Press. It is a national publication and has a number in the Library of Congress. It will be sold in Costco, Barnes and Noble, and at various local vendors. Local 55 has generously sponsored the purchase of the first 500 copies. Please contact me for a pre-order and I will deliver the book to you after final publication on June 6, 2016. All proceeds go back to the Local 55 Widows and Orphans Fund. Cost is $22.

You can look at a preview of it now on<> and<>

The project has taken more than two years and involved thousands of hours of research and input. It spans back to the origin of every one of our 13 original agencies, beginning in 1876. I have an author’s copy in my hands and will be showcasing it at the Retiree Luncheon on May 4.

Here is an exerpt:
“Alameda County spans from the shores of the San Francisco Bay to the golden inland hills. Alameda County Fire Department (ACFD) is comprised of multiple consolidated agencies that began joining forces and sharing resources in 1993. Protecting unincorporated county land as well as Ashland, Cherryland, San Lorenzo, Castro Valley, San Leandro, Dublin, Union City, Newark, Emeryville, and the National Laboratories at Livermore and Berkeley, ACFD serves over 500 square miles and 330,000 citizens. This legacy stretches back 140 years, recalling the shared experiences of bucket brigades, teams of horses pulling steam-engine pumpers down muddy roads, the advent of motorized apparatus, and the days when school boys would be pulled from class to ride tailboard to fight blazes in the hills. These agencies have sent soldiers to two world wars, survived massive earthquakes, fought catastrophic wildfires, and touched the lives of Bay Area citizens for over a century. The ACFD is the sum of its many unique parts, which together form a premier, all-risk fire department.”

It is great pleasure to have completed this project and an honor to carry forth the stories of those who have come before us. I hope this book will be something your families and children will enjoy for years to come, and that it will serve as a potent tribute to our predecessors.

ACFD Historical Committee is recruiting members! Please contact Heather Marques 510-387-4913 or<>

Thank you,


Stan Farrelle

I am sorry to report that our friend and brother passed away after a heart attack on April 20, 2016


Condolence Cards can be sent to the family at:

Mrs. Patty Farrelle & Family

1920 Great View Lane

Diamond Springs, CA 95619

Currently we are waiting on a location in lieu of flowers to be sent.


Alan Evans Division Chief

Alameda County Fire Department

Cell: (510) 693-3405


4/4/2016 from Ryan Nishimoto:

Hi Rich,


Here's an update for the Bresnan Distributor regarding the new Dental Insurance...


Digital Benefit Advisors and Premier Access are still working with me to enroll all retirees into the new dental insurance through Premier Access.  They have been able to automatically enroll most of you.  Those who are not complete will be contacted soon to get a few more pieces of information.  We received payment from most of you, but have yet to deposit the checks.  Sorry for the delay. The dental coverage through Premier Access will be post dated back to April 1, so please feel free to see the dentist and let them know of the situation or to call me if they have any questions.  Thank you all for your patience.  We should be completed with open enrollment and assigned a group number shortly.  Cards will also be mailed soon for future insurance identification if requested.  



Ryan Nishimoto, Advisory Committee Chairperson

Alameda County Fire Fighters Association

International Association of Fire Fighters, Local #55

707-980-2006 cell

Ryan Nishimoto
ACFFA IAFF L55 - Advisory Committee Chairperson

3/15/2016 from Ryan Nishimoto:

Hi Rich,


Please post the following to the Bresnan Distributor at your convenience:


It's official, the active members have voted to change our dental program back to a traditional dental insurance through Premier Access.  The change will officially take place on April 1st. Information on how to set up your new dental account through Premier Access will be mailed to your home address or PO Box on file at the Union office.  You should be receiving it within the next ten days.  Please contact me if you have any questions.  


Ryan Nishimoto, Advisory Committee Chairperson

Alameda County Fire Fighters Association

International Association of Fire Fighters, Local #55

707-980-2006 cell

Ryan Nishimoto
ACFFA IAFF L55 - Advisory Committee Chairperson

3/8/2016 from Frank Sturgeon:


Arline and I decided we needed to contribute to the Bresnan, so here it is.

We are both doing fine.  Staying busy with golf and Tai Chi.  Yes, Tai Chi and other activities.

My best to all, and thanks again for the Bresnan.


1/20/2016 from Terry Givens:

My wife, Jody and I got to spend ten days in Cuba.  In Havana Cuba they have a National museum that is dedicated to their “Bomberos” (firefighters).  Their equipment is what we wore in the 1940’s and 1950’s.  Now being displayed in their showcase is the very first fire patch from a United States Fire department.  Our very own Alameda County Fire Department patch is being proudly displayed.  They were very excited to receive it.  They however do not have patches so I could not get one in return.  They get paid exactly what they pay their doctors; a sum of approximately forty Cuban dollars a month or about $46.00 US.


I would say my stay there was more like an experience and not much of a “vacation’.


Stay Safe,


Terry Givens



12/22/2015 from Bill Robertson:

Fergie......Bill Robertson here.   Just got word that another oldtimer has passed.  Don't know how many of those left will remember Milt Snyder, but just got word from  his wife Jan that Milt passed away on December 8, 2015.  Had been in touch with them just after they had relocated in Laughlin, Nevada, so was really surprised to hear this.  He left the SLFD on a disability many years back, but thought that some remember him.  Just another oldtimer gone... Will keep in touch if I hear any more.....   Bill

12/7/2015 from Pat Corbiere:



Thanks for all your work, and would you please wish a healthy and happy Christmas to all the Alameda County Fire Firefighters especially the ones we used to work with.

Kathy and I are doing well and keep involved in many endeavors.  Both sons are doing fine also, and I manage to keep getting on bikes.  Someday I may have to build some kind of mounting platform to still get on it though, but for now I can still get my bu-- on them. 


Don't forget the reasons for the season!



pat & kathy


10/20/2015 from Judy Grover (about Roy Jones):

Hi Rich,

Roy continues to enjoy your newsletters even though his memory fails him more often than not these days.

Roy is 96 now.  He remains fiercely independent.  His sense of humor continues to delight us all.

Rich, I understand that your news is driven by the more current events which we enjoy, but I appreciate the respect you five to those who went before.

Thank you for providing this important and enjoyable link to Roy’s past.


115 Noble Way, Granite Falls, WA 98252


P.S.  Roy was my sister’s flight instructor in 1985 – that’s how we met him.  To make a long story short, Roy’s wife and our stepdad both died in 2001.  Who knew that at the age of 82, Roy and our mom would meet and become companions for the next twelve years?!!

Mama died July 2014.  Roy now lives in a retirement community here in Granite Falls, WA where I spend almost every day with him.

Roger Frago



It is with great sadness that I inform you of the passing of retired Engineer Roger Frago.  Roger passed away tonight, October 3rd.  Roger was a valued member of the San Leandro Fire Department and Alameda County Fire Department.  He has been battling amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) and was recently admitted to the hospital with pneumonia.  Many of us will miss him dearly.

Please join me in supporting Eric, his mother Debbie and the entire Frago family by offering our condolences. 

Once services are determined it will be communicated.  In accordance with ACFD policy, flags will be lowered to half-staff on the date of the service.

Sincerely,David A. Rocha, Fire Chief
Alameda County Fire Department
6363 Clark Avenue, Dublin CA 94568
(925) 833-3473 or (510) 632-3473 Office


From Tom Neuerburg

I just got off the phone with Eric, he and the Frago family are coping and doing as well as can be expected. Eric says he has received many texts, phone calls, emails, etc and he appreciates them very much!
Roger's wishes were to not have any type of service, he did not want his family and friends to have to go through an event like that. His wish was to be cremated and have his ashes dispersed on one of his favorite beaches in Hawaii. Eric says sometime in the future the family will take a trip to Hawaii and carry out this final wish of his dad. Since there will be no service I will take one last opportunity to wish the Frago's peace and comfort at this time, and reassure them that the ACFD (ESPECIALLY those of us at The Snakepit) will miss Roger and his memory will live on.


Here is an address:

Debra Frago

4002 Suffolk Way

Pleasanton, Ca 94588


Hello Retiree’s,


Please help me welcome Captain. Seth Anderson’s new addition. 


Congrats Seth and family… 


From: LoBese, Sam C., ACFD
Sent: Thursday, October 15, 2015 9:50 PM
Subject: New Member to the ACFD Family


Hello, Please welcome the newest member to our ACFD Family..     Jaxton, Jeffery  Anderson was born on October 15th at 20:54   20 ½ inches 9lbs.  Mom is doing well. Congratulations to the Anderson Family.




Sam LoBese


Station 24/A


Hello Retiree’s. 


                Please help me congratulate the retirement of Deputy Chief, Dan Benfield.  He has worked hard and has had many achievements. 


Congrats Chief. Benfield.






DATE: October 16, 2015

TO: All Personnel

FROM: David A. Rocha, Fire Chief


SUBJECT: Retirement: Deputy Chief Dan Benfield


Deputy Chief Dan Benfield is retiring October 31, 2015.

Deputy Chief Benfield has been a valued member of the Alameda County Fire Department for 30 years holding many vital positions

throughout his career. His career began with the Dougherty Regional Fire Authority then here with the Alameda County Fire Department. Please join me in recognizing Deputy Chief Benfield for his service and the multitude of contributions he has made to our organization.


We greatly appreciate his hard work and dedication to the Alameda County Fire Department and its partners.

We wish Chief Benfield good luck in his future endeavors.

9/25/2015 from Darin Guardanapo


Wow, I can’t believe it is here, 30 years went very fast.

This letter is bitter sweet. I am happy and excited but also sad and apprehensive.

It has started to feel real the past couple of tours, cleaning out my locker and files has really brought that to reality for me.

As it became very real today, with lots of people coming by and emails and social media statements of congratulations.

I think back at my time in the fire service, being a Firefighter, Engineer and a Captain (really a Firefighter the whole time). I was a HazMater, Trucky, Trainer, and servant to the community. I worked for four different Fire Departments, all great, especially this one.

I am happy with what I have done, but the most important thing I’m proud of is my relationships I have made over the years. I hope if I worked with you a day or years that you felt I was interested and wanted to get to know you. I learned so much from everyone. We all have faults and strengths, I choose to focus on strengths (and make fun of faults). You all made me a better person and I thank you all.

Please call me for some golf or a beer or both!

Take care of each other.



Darin Guardanapo 209-607-3251


9/25/2015 from Nat Mar:

Greetings ACFD,


On Saturday we competed in the San Francisco Firefighters Chili Cook Off to benefit their Toy Foundation. There were approximately 20 teams and it was only up to the judges (no people’s choice award). We did not take home a trophy this time but in the end it is all about the money raised for the kids. I’d like to thank the following members for coming out to help, especially during these times where we’re all stretched thin. Thank You:


Brian Centoni

Andrew Elliot

Josh Leines

Matt McAusland

Joe Medina

Allen Horton

The Conscious Souls


Lastly, I’d like to thank everyone’s family members for coming out and supporting us, especially my wife Jen and my parents! Bringing a newborn baby out to the city all day isn’t easy!




Nate Mar




ACFD Annual Recognition Ceremony

October 1, 2015

7:00 pm

Shannon Community Center

11600 Shannon Avenue

Dublin, CA 94568

Please join us in recognizing your friends and co-workers, as we celebrate years of service, new hires, promotions, special awards and retirements.  Your attendance will support and enhance the importance of the evening for those being recognized.

Look forward to seeing you there!

Please RSVP to Sue Beville via email or phone (925) 833-3473 x1120.



There's a new Tiago on the block


After nine months of construction, Tyson Tiago’s latest, little project is complete.

Bryson Lee Tiago was born into this world Sunday evening at 1940 hrs.

Tyson’s new best friend weighed in at six pounds, nine ounces and stands twenty inches tall.

Little Bryson and Mom Brittany are doing great and are resting comfortably.

Wish him well and feel free to send him building plans for his next project.



Steve Walker

Alameda County Fire Department


It is with profound sadness that Fremont Firefighters Local 1689 announces the passing of Deputy Fire Chief Jim Martin.


Brother Martin passed away on July 25, 2015 at 1147hrs. He was 53 years old. Jim fought valiantly for more than four years to beat job related cancer, but in the end, lost the battle. He was just a few months shy of 30 years served.


Jim proudly served and represented this union for nearly his entire career, holding most positions on our board. Prior to being promoted to Deputy Fire Chief, Jim served several terms as president of Fremont Firefighters Local 1689.


"Even after promoting out of our ranks, Jim was a staunch supporter of our union and always looked at issues from a management and labor perspective," said Local 1689 President Jeff Klevin. " Jim never forgot his roots."

He will be remembered as "well-loved and received" by his colleagues at the Fremont Fire Department, said Division Chief Diane Hendry.


His cancer was occupationally related and this is being considered a line-of-duty death.


"It's been a long road," Hendry said.


Martin was diagnosed with cancer three years ago and fought it for a year, she said. He returned to work with a "clean bill of health," but the cancer returned this year.


"He spent the better part of this year fighting it again," Hendry said.


He climbed the ranks from captain, to battalion chief to deputy chief. Martin also spent several terms as the local union president.


The fallen firefighter always made time for others, Hendry said.


"He always made everybody feel like they were the most important person in that moment and gave them whatever time he had," she said.


Martin is survived by his wife, Sandy Martin, and their children, McKenzie and Kyle, and his daughter Allie Martin.


Hello Everyone:

I am pleased to announce that Firefighter Nathan Mar has had addition to his family. Haley Rose Mar was born on 7/9/15 morning 6lbs.12 oz and 20inches long. Mother, father and big bother are all doing well.

Respectfully Captain Baldwin 24B

Ray Morrison



Ray was born in 1925 in Port Arthur, Canada to Alexander Morrison and Mary Catherine (Regan) Morrison.

In 1928, Ray immigrated with his family to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He attended elementary school, but like most boys during the Depression, he and his twin brother had to drop out of high school at the age of 16 in order to support their family.

His family finally settled in California and at the age of 18, he was drafted into the U.S. Army. Ray served three years of active duty during World War II and served as a perimeter guard during the Nuremberg Trials. After being honorably dis­charged from the active forces, Ray served 6 years in the re­serves.

On Aug. 4, 1951, Ray married his loving wife Darlene (Albert) Morrison and they started their family — two sons and one daughter.

During his working years, Ray worked as a fire captain for the San Leandro Fire Department. Ray truly valued educa­tion and returned to school to obtain his high school diploma. He then continued his education and obtained his Fire Science Teaching Credential. He retired from the fire department in 1980. He and Darlene moved to Nevada County in 1987.

Ray was active in his community, was part of the Gold Country Celtic Society and a docent at Empire Mine State Park. He loved backpacking and skiing and earned gold medals in the California Police and Firefighters Winter Olympics. Ray even earned a spot in the World Police and Firefighter Olym­pics in Australia.

Ray is survived by his dear friend Alexandria “Saunie” Mac­Gregor, his sister Mary and many other loving friends and fam­ily members.

He is preceded in death by his wife Darlene; sisters, Pa­tricia and Maryland; and his brothers, Alexander and James.

Attended the memorial service for my 1st Captain, Ray Morrison, World War II vet­eran. Great guy! Captain Joe Neves attend­ed. He retired right after I started in 1973. He is 98 years old! He was in the Marines during World War II. These guys are the last of the “Greatest Generation”.

Vince Davis

7/23/2015 from Bill Robertson:

Rich .. Bill Robertson here..... Was glad to finally see some word about Joe Neves.  There were eight of us who were hired at the same time and went to work in the SLFD in March of 1949.  To my knowledge there are only three of us left, Joe, Roy Jones and Myself.  I had been in touch with Roy, but the last I heard of Joe was when he was living in Arizona.  At that time Bruno Golleto and Wally Wallenius were living in a place outside of Yuma and they had been in touch with Joe. From that time on I had heard nothing of his whereabouts.  I was visiting with Hal Ryder at that time in Arizona, and I visited with Bruno and Wally also.  It was good seeing pictures of Vince Davis, Nabonne & Connie also.  We have all aged a bit.  I will hit 90 in September and so far I'm still hanging in there.  My wife, who is still living also, but has suffered with Alzheimers for the last 14 years is still hanging in there also.

See her most every day, but hasn't known who I am for many years now.  I hope that some  of the old timers who will see this will remember who all of those I have mentioned and will remember the old days in  San Leandro.  Hello to all of you..and take care...  Bill


7/21/2015 from Rod Mendes:

Hi rich

My son Dale passed away on July 9th.  He was named after my good friend Dale Valentine.  If you want to post his obit I would appreciate it. Dale was 29 when he passed a2ay. The youngest battalion chief in the usfs system. He was a remarkable man. I miss him deeply. 

Dale Alexander Mendes April 3, 1986 - July 9, 2015
Beloved son, brother, uncle and friend too many, Dale grew up in Orleans, California and graduated from Hoopa High School in 2003. At the time of his death he worked as the superintendent for the Salyer Handcrew on the Lower Trinity Ranger District where he was respected and loved by the women and men who knew him. He was a resident of Willow Creek, California, and although he was from the small towns on the Klamath and Trinity Rivers he was known and respected throughout the United States after more than a decade of fighting fire for the U.S. Forest Service.
Dale began his career with the USFS in 2004 as a GS-3 Apprentice firefighter on the Orleans Ranger District with the Ukonom Hotshots. In 2010, through hard work and recognition as an excellent firefighter, he became a GS-8 Captain on his crew. In 2014, Dale became the Salyer Crew Superintendent.
Dale’s charisma was second to none. Wherever he went he made personal connections with those he met and he maintained those connections and friendships throughout his life. He was a personable man who cherished his friendships .  Dale was an accomplished instructor and enjoyed training professional firefighters in a variety of firefighting courses. He was an accomplished aviation helicopter operations expert and felling instructor with an unlimited Class C falling certification. He was a professional in every aspect of his career.
Although he was a hard-working professional, he also knew how to have a good time. In between fun and work, he spent his time mentoring youth athletes in wrestling at Hoopa High School and the free style programs in Hoopa and Willow Creek, moto-cross, mixed martial arts and Jujitsu. He dreamed of opening a Jujitsu-style gym with his brother Nathan in Willow Creek this year where youth and adults could hone their physical and mental skills. Although he outdid most with is skill and wit, he always enjoyed having his friends and family close, keeping fun at the forefront of his mind and enjoying people.
Aside from being a leader in his profession he enjoyed hunting with his brother Jeremiah and close friends, mentoring and spending time with his little brother Aidan and teasing his little sister Isabella, practicing mixed martial arts (he was a two title belt holder), coaching, wrestling and being a mentor to many youth in the Klamath and Trinity River Communities.
Dale had a big heart when it came to his family, especially his brothers and sisters. He wanted the best for everybody in his life. Along with all of his accomplishments his dream was to have a family of his own and raise children.
He is preceded in death by his grandmother Geraldine Peters Crook of Orleans and Grandfather Manuel Correia Mendes of Eureka; Grandparents Lee and Freda Knowlson of Fremont.
He is survived by his Father and step-mother Rod and Maria Mendes of Hoopa, mother Katherine Begay; brothers Nathan, Jeremiah and Aidan; sisters Erica, Kristen and Isabella; Aunts and Uncles Corriene Mendes and Leonard Morales of Mckinleyville,  Marlene and Dan Burnie of Mckinleyvil
le, Carla and Tom Creason of Eureka, Pam Urbano of Oakdale; nephews, Nick, Manuel, Marcus, Alex, Elijah, Kolin, Izick, and Gabriel Anthony; nieces; Elyssa, Natalie, Kylie and Miahlee; numerous cousins of all ages that he adored, and very special close friends Fermin Sanchez, Rene Almodovar, Mike Lee Sr., Mike Lee Jr., Jim and Shelly Slusser and family, Laverne Glaze, Betty and Steve Stagno,  Allie, Bud and Iris Hostler, Willie, Shari, Kaycee and Jasper Hostler, Romeo and Heather McCovey, and so many more close and dear friends that there are too many to mention here. Please know that he loved all of them.


Hi Rich,

Here’s an update for the Bresnan:


The department has signed a new contract for the third party administration of your monthly medical reimbursement checks to begin on July 1, 2015.  A copy of the letter you should have received by now via mail has been attached.  Monthly fees remain at $6.  If you are enrolled in dental, then EBS will bill you directly starting next month and automatic payment will be an option available.  Please contact me if you have and questions or concerns.



Ryan Nishimoto

ACFFA IAFF Local #55 - Advisory Committee Chairperson 707-980-2006

Dear Retiree:

Effective July 1, 2015, Employee Benefit Specialists (EBS) will no longer administer your retiree medical reimbursement.

This benefit will now be administered directly by Alameda County Fire Department (ACFD).

This change will not affect the level of benefit you are currently receiving.

The medical reimbursement will be paid to you on or before the first of each month so it coincides with the deduction from your pension. Monthly administrative fee of $6.00 will continue to be deducted from the medical reimbursement.

Please do not hesitate to contact me with any questions you may have. Sincerely,

Lorelei Wade,

Hi Rich,


Attached is a form to turn in to receive direct deposit medical reimbursement checks from ADP.  Please pass onto the retirees on the Bresnan if you can.  Thank you for your help getting the information out.  The department will also be mailing out direct deposit forms in a couple months.  Why they waited a few months to do this is beyond me.

 Click here for form

Thanks Again,

Ryan Nishimoto, Advisory Committee Chairperson Alameda County Fire Fighters Association

International Association of Fire Fighters, Local #55 707-980-2006 cell

Tony & Kathleen Rocha 50th Anniversary

Passing of Former ACFD Firefighter Bestrop


Hello all,


I am sad to report that, former ACFD Firefighter, Pete Bestrop has passed away. I don’t have very many details on this, but please keep his family in your thoughts and prayers. As I get further, I will pass along any specifics.


Thank you,


Dan Benfield




At this time it looks like there will be no public services



On behalf of Don Graff, my husband, please accept this check.

Don enjoyed reading the ACFD retirees newsletters.

Don was in hospice and passed away in January 2015. I know he'd want me to thank you for all your hard work.



Bruce Bradley Passes

It is with sadness that I relay the news that retired Fire Chief Bruce Bradley passed away on March 27th, after a bout with lung cancer. Chief Bradley retired in 1993.

I spoke with Bruce’s son Dan, a member of the City of Alameda Fire Department. Dan said his mom, Pat, is doing as well as expected.


Thank you.

Rosa Linda Doll

Alameda County Fire Department

Phone: (925) 833-3473 x1121

Phone: (510) 632-3473 x1121

Fax: (925) 875-9387<>


Service was:

April 21, 2015

Immaculate Heart of Mary


JIM PHIPPS August 26, 1943 - March 24, 2015

a 35 year veteran of Emeryville Fire Department. Jim went on to create

Fire Truck Headquarters, a distributor of Smeal Fire Engines.

Should you care to send condolences they can be directed to his wife: Lois Phipps, 140 Pleasant View Drive, Pleasant Hill, CA 94523.

In Lieu of Flowers: donations will be accepted by:

Alameda County Firefighters Local 55, Widows and Orphans Fund 369 - 369 15th St. Oakland, CA 94612 Attn: Aaron Lee


Jim Barton



 Heather Marques is working on a compilation historical proj­ect from all the consolidations that make up what we know as ACFD. She needs your help with all history and photos from all of the departments that make up ACFD. Let’s help her out and get this project done right. Please contact her with your stories and photos right now. She is on a time crunch, so do it now.

FERG <><

Firefighter/Paramedic Heather Marques


FERG Heather Chuck Towns

3/28/2015 from Jim Dorpinghaus:


A while back, you mentioned you'd like more news from your readers. I'd like to submit a topic that has never been covered by the Bresnan, so am going to start it off to see what happens. The topic is memorable first meals prepared by the new guy when it was his (now also her) turn to do their thing in the kitchen.


Will begin by referring the first meal I prepared for the guys when I got my first station assignment after completion of training. I mentioned to the crew that I was a novice in the kitchen and they suggested I prepare something that I prepared at home. Sooo, I did!! They each gave me the $1 that was required at that time and with the $5 in my pocket, went shopping.


When all was ready, I mentioned the 'soup was on' and they filed into the kitchen. One thing very noticeable was they were rather quiet when they saw the repast placed there before them. It was a pan full of fish sticks, another pan full of tater tots, a bowl of veggies, a loaf of bread with sticks of butter and a spoon of cottage cheese with a half peach topped with a dab of mayo and sprinkled with paprika--for a colorful touch! It was rather quiet while we ate, but they did eat everything I'd put on the table. I was feeling pretty good about the success of my first firehouse meal until I accidently overheard a couple of the guys mention they "hoped he never fixes that again!" It goes without saying my ego took a big hit when I heard this, so I began putting some thought into preparing something more edible.


Thinking back, my meal was an epicurean delight compared to what another new guy put on the table for his first effort in the kitchen. It consisted of 2 cans of pork & beans heated with pieces of hot dogs he'd cut up and added to the pot. Also on the table was a big bag of potato chips, loaf of bread & butter and no salad. We ate it, because that's all there was, but told the new man the ice cream with chocolate topping was good as a dessert. Our menu for meal preparation improved greatly in a short span of time.


There are other memorable stories overheard about 'kitchen miscues' over the years. One such story came from a member of another department when he mentioned one of their new guys served a can of Kipper-Snacks & crackers to the crew for his first meal. Also a couple more stories about others when a man on probation heard his new Captain liked beets--so he put some on the table with his first meal at that station. The Captain looked at him and informed him it's customary, when serving beets, to cook them first!!!! (A true story!!) Another new man felt everyone liked cherry pie so made one for dessert for the crew the first time he cooked. There was just one little problem with the pie--the guy had bought cherries with the pits still in them.

Am sure there are other similar stories about 'first meals' and it would be interesting to hear from the guys, including the retirees, on some of their experiences.


Will close by saying the first station I worked at was in the county--the old Ashland station--before being hired by San Leandro. Only this time, the crew tried to gross out the new guy and it backfired when I turned the table on them. We’d had a training film on Emergency Childbirth earlier in the day and that night they put a piece of raw liver on my plate at meal time. They'd given me a pretty good initiation on previous shifts which was part pf being accepted. Well, when I saw the liver, I noticed they were all staring at me, so I took my knife, cut off a small piece and ATE it, after which I told them it needed some salt. They were very quiet during the meal and thus ended the initiation of the new guy!!

A good many meals put on the table at the firehouses were absolutely delicious, so maybe we can get some input on those.

Take care, a big HI and good health to all!!


3/15/2015 from John Andreasen:

Dear Rich,

Here is a picture for the Bresnan or maybe the ACFD archives.  Most of the personnel you probably recognize.  The picture was taken by R. Hall – ACFD retired.  According to the stamp on the back this was the entire “A” shift in Dublin at the time (May 1987.  Simi, Phisterer and Biro transferred to San Ramon Valley Fire when Dublin consolidated with ACFD.

I am also sending you 2 checks – one for the newsletter, and one so when you go to the bank you can have your wife with you and have a sandwich on me. 

Thanx for all you work.

Fraternally yours,

John Andreason

L to R: Chris Sutterley – John Andreasen – Steve Hunter – T.J. Welch – Tony Simi – John MJcClintic – Dave Eaton – Dan Benifield – Dino Zoggas – Bob Phisterer – Curt Biro – Mike Becker


3/10/2015 from Lynn Staysa:

Hi Rich,

Just a short “update” on what Don Staysa has been up to these days.

This morning he was up early to cut, split, haul and stack wood.  He has been at this on-going project for months.  In between that he picks up feed in Pleasanton to take up in the Livermore hills to feed the cattle.  He operates a small cow-calf operation in which he says “keeps him busy.”  Oh yes, he is still a director and board member for the Livermore Rodeo.  Which will be 100 years old in 2018.  He devotes a lot of time on that board.  Did I mention that he still loves to hunt and fish?  He would love to have extra hours to work on his 12 handicap (and rising) in golf. 

So, next time you guys are hunting, fishing, golfing, moving cattle, or at the rodeo grounds, you just might run into him.

We enjoyed seeing everyone at Dave Lord’s retirement party.  You all look great.

Well, that’s it on Don…What a guy

Lynn Staysa

3/4/2015 from Steve & Julie Briggs:

Dear Rich,


It is with great sorrow that our son Thomas John Briggs was involved in a fatal automobile accident this past Sunday, March 1st. and was sent home to be with the Lord.  Thomas, aka Tom or Tommy was 29 years old and twin brother to Aaron James Briggs, sibling to Stephen Jr., Daniel, Danika, Evan and Jordan and beloved son of Stephen and Elizabeth Briggs.  He was loved so dearly by us all and will greatly be missed.  Tommy was to soon be married in May to his fiancé Laura Spafford who survived the accident.  Tommy had a heart of gold and was truly a Saint that was taken from us all much too soon.  Please send your prayers to the Briggs family and to Tom's fiancé, Laura Spafford.  Services to be held on Tuesday, March 10, 2015 in San Diego were Tom resided.




Stephen and Julie Briggs



Ed Larsen passed away Monday night, February 9.  

Hello. My name is David Larsen. I am Ed's oldest son. My dad did pass away on Monday morning 2/9/15. The doctor said from a stroke and then a heart attack. He was at home in paradise with his girlfriend Charlene. I will have a service for him in paradise probably 4 to 6 weeks or so. His cell phone will be shut off on Friday so any questions please contact me (text is ok) at 925-550-6779. Or Charlene at his home phone. Thank you very much.





From Dave Tibbets:

Rich,  I  wish to recognize and thank the Department for sending the Honor Guard to Ed Larsen's service.  We retirees were very impressed with those fine young men and their attention to detail as they all made sure to introduce themselves to each of us while giving us condolences on the loss of our comrade.  The ceremony was perfect.  Ed would have been very proud.----Dave




From Tracy Patton:

If you knew Ed, then you have many memories you will never forget.

As a friend of Ed for over 25 years I don’t know where to start. When I first met Ed back in 1990, he was a captain with Castro Valley Fire. He was famous for his one liners. They were never meant to be funny, but we all thought they were. Like the time the news reporter asked if there was any chance the man buried in a trench collapse would be rescued and Ed said “no.” Danielle (who used to work here) told me that when she worked at the Shadow Cliffs water slides (Ed managed them) she asked Ed about becoming a firefighter. Ed said “not a chance.” Cary Thompson used to say he wanted Ed to adopt him. That’s because Ed was always there for his kids and very generous with them. There used to be a family feel to the fire dept. back then in Castro Valley and Ed was a big part of that. You always knew you could count on him to have your back, even when he was acting BC. I have would like to list many more great quotes and stories, but I know it will just get this message deleted (it may be anyway). If you didn’t know Ed, take a moment to ask an old Castro Valley guy about him. He did a lot for this dept. like starting the ACFD SCBA program and training all the new guys how to be an engineer and etc. That stuff seems so trivial because of the much bigger impact he made as a friend to all of us.


Tracy Patton



From Dave Tibbets:

Ed was the first person I met at Castro Valley Fire Department and, it was before either of us were hired.  It was at the physical agility test, six months before our appointment.  Standing around, waiting for the next event we were to participate in, Ed approached me and started rattling off all kinds of information about himself and his family.  I guess I must have looked friendly because, he wouldn't let me go.  It was as if he had made up his mind we were going to be friends.  I think he may have been a little nervous and figured we were all in the same boat.  He was right, or course and when I left for home that day I wondered to myself, "Am I going to be working with that guy?"  He was the only person I remembered from that test day.  So, from the very moment I met him, he made a mighty impression on me. 

Tracy was right when he said that Ed had made major contributions to the Fire Department.  Ed and I were promoted to Captain within a year of each other in the middle eighties and we both worked at the Crow canyon and Cull canyon station (I don't know what number it is now, it was Station Six then)  and the Problems of Crow Canyon became prominent for us.  Ed developed a massive file of information on usable bridges, target properties, emergency access, response times and, he developed a response evolution for protecting homes and property using the Tender for portable water supply and utilizing a mutual response from Consolidated at the other end of the Canyon.  It was brilliant.  He didn't do this to gain favor.  He did it because it was the right thing to do.  And it made our jobs easier and more professional

He acquired a couple of nicknames. Among them:  Easy Ed.  He could never refuse doing a favor for anyone.  When he was a firefighter he went to Alaska with retired CVFD Captain Nolan MacDanials on a gold mining trip. When he returned we started calling him "Klondike Ed."  He was the butt of a few jokes but, he always took them in a good-natured way and usually got pay-back.

I wish all the present day Firefighters could have known, and worked with Ed.  He was a living example of devotion to selfless duty.  He put the importance of public service ahead of his own importance and served the community without a thought of his own personal gain.  He was a team player and every minute he was on duty he was, in the truest sense a traditional Firefighter.    I'm going to miss him,  -------------Dave Tibbets 


Ed Decou Passes

July 19, 1951 – January 27, 2015

2/11/2015 from Tony Rocha:


Thanks for the great job you do on the Bresnan-

I enjoy getting it.

Enclosed is a little to help.

Tony Rocha

2/10/2015 from Gary Henthorn:

Hi Rich,


Sure enjoy the News Letter. Don’t see too many of the gang around town. When I go to a station and don’t know anyone. 


I plan on getting to some of the functions but usually gone out of town.

I’ll try harder this year.


I’m still riding Dirt Bikes and going camping every chance I get.

I have many hobbies, and not enough time. 


Best wishes to you and all my friends I never see.


Gary Henthorn  




Ps.  Contribution enclosed.


2/6/2015 from Rich Ferguson – The Bresnan:

I wanted to let you all know that I have made a decision to stop doing the printed version of the Bresnan Distributor.  I will continue for the whole year of 2015 doing the same as always.  So, it looks like there will be 5 more printed versions with the last one being December 2015/January 2016.

This will only stop the Bresnan Distributor that is printed on paper.  I don’t see much reason to continue going to the effort and expense of having it printed, and having Connie fold 125 copies and labeling and stamping 125 envelopes.  The newsletter is available on the website.  You can even view it on your smart phone.

I will continue doing the newsletter on the website and try to stay in contact on email.

This will save us about $150 a month, and save a lot of time for me and Connie.

As of now I am going to suggest that the donation to the Bresnan should be $5.00 per year.

Let me know what you think.


FERG <><



2/6/2015 from Steve Knight:

Hi Rich,

I am so sorry for neglecting to send a check to cover the Bresnan exp0enses.  I sent a little extra to make up for it and soothe my guilty conscience.  I’ve been retired now for just over 17 months and the Bresnan has been a very valuable resource for me.

Thank you very much for doing this, I really appreciate it.

Steve Knight 

P.S. I didn’t think that I would like retirement.  I was wrong.

2/6/2015 from Joe Ferreira:
Hi Rich,

I was wondering if a list is available containing names and phone numbers of retired San Leandro firefighters.

I hope all is well with you.

Joe Ferreira


Hi Joe,

No, I don't have a list available.  I handle all of the email addresses with a company on line so that I don't have to deal with that.  I suppose I could do the research and develop a list but I want to stay away from that.

I do have a lot of retirees in my own personal address book and I would be happy to give you an address whenever you ask for one.


FERG <><


1/13/2015 from Frank Sturgeon:


Thanks again for the Bresnan.  You do a great jog.

Arline and I are doing fine. No major health issues.  We are quite thankful for that.

Thanks again and keep up the good work.


1/7/2015 from Ryan Nishimoto


Hi Rich,


Happy New Year.  I hope all is well.  


Here is some information you may want to consider for the Bresnan...

For all B Group retirees,


Because we tiered our retirement benefits in the new M.O.U.(s), the B Group had to also include the change in the B Group M.O.U.  With this change, the department was required by CalPERS to use a third party administrator to reimburse monthly medical premiums for all retirees.  A $6 administration fee will also be charged monthly for the services of the third party administrator (Employee Benefit Specialists).  This fashion of monthly reimbursement is consistent with how retired A Group members are reimbursed and have been for several years.  Sorry for the change and additional $6 admin fee, but we didn't have a choice with our new M.O.U.(s) per CalPERS.  Your monthly CalPERS check will continue to come at the normal time, but the amount of your medical premium will be deducted.  Prior to you CalPERS check arriving, you will receive a monthly check from EBS for the medical premium amount charged by your coverage provider up to the Kaiser rate minus $6.  


This is supposed to take place in February.    


To sum it up, B Group retirees will now see $6 less a month (like A Group members) due to third party administration fee, but you'll actually receive two checks with one coming earlier than the CalPERS check.  



Ryan Nishimoto

ACFFA IAFF Local #55 - Advisory Committee Chairperson



12/24/2014 from Amanda Benfield:

Hello all,

We are having a lot of members preparing to retire, and I am hearing a lot of the same questions and unknown answers when I talk to them. I was thinking it would be nice to have a folder of useful information or things you wish you knew before you retired. If you have a moment and wouldn’t mind E mailing me, please share your experience and knowledge so we can pass it on to future retirees.

Thank you,

Amanda Benfield            


Amanda Benfield

Captain, Alameda County Fire Department

Station 17 - B  Shift

6200 Madigan Rd , Dublin CA

Work (925) 833-3473 ext 2017

Cell (925) 518-5184


11/20/2014 from Sandy Cole Schultz:


 I haven't been a recipient of the Bresnan. Kaye Dana kept me updated. I just recently learned of his death as well as bill McCammon, Nolan and Siggy. It is interesting some of the old old guys are still up and around. I signed up to receive the electronic version. Will send you the yearly fee. I was a part of the SLFD for so long. I do miss hearing how all of you are doing.
Women do lose their society when they lose their husbands. Chuck and I live in Brentwood. My 2 grandsons are 12 and 20. Jim has been gone 20 years January 1st.


Sandy Cole Schultz

11/3/2014 from Thomas Tran:

Hello Everyone!


The Holiday Season is coming faster than you know! Please come out to BJ's restaurant in Dublin (district 18) on December 3rd (second day of B shift) from 17:00-22:00 in support of our toy program! 15% of all food sales will be donated to the toy program so that we can purchase toys that are not donated regularly (Ex. Bikes, gift cards, etc.)


All you have to do is show up, let them know that you're there in support of our toy program, eat good food and have a few drinks of your choice! This is a family event so please bring your spouse, kids, friends, neighbors, roommates, your fantasy football league and whoever else likes good food, good beer, and good times!


Also, I will be buying drinks for the following people:

1.) First person at the event

2.) Person who brings the most people

3.) First person to do a back flip

Thank you all in advance, and hope to see you there!


Thomas Tran

Firefighter A Shift

Alameda County Fire Department

(510) 304-7535 Cell

Alameda County

Fire Department


CONTACT: Aisha Knowles

Public Information Officer

(510) 693-3439

Memorial Service Set to Honor the Life & Legacy of Bill McCammon,

EBRCSA Executive Director and First Alameda County Fire Chief

Pleasanton-On Monday, October 13, 2014, retired Alameda County Fire Chief Bill McCammon, 61, died in his

sleep. He was currently serving as the Executive Director of the East Bay Regional Communications System

Authority (EBRCSA), which built and operates an interoperable communications system for 43 public agencies

within Alameda and Contra Costa counties. Chief McCammon was also the purrent President of the Alameda

County Fair Board of Directors and Treasurer of the National Fire Protection Association's Board of Directors.

The community is invited to honor the life of Chief McCammon at a memorial service on Thursday, October 23,

2014 at 11:00 a.m. at the Alameda County Fairgrounds (4501 Pleasanton Avenue, Pleasanton, CA 94566) in

Building A (Young California Building). Although the service will begin at 11 :00 a.m., guests are encouraged to

arrive no later than 10:30 a.m.

As the first Fire Chief of the Alameda County Fire Department (ACFD), the department doubled in size under his

leadership with the addition of contracts for service with the City of San Leandro, the City of Dublin, and the

Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Chief McCammon implemented the hazardous materials response team,

paramedic program, rescue company and water rescue program. He led the effort to form the Alameda County

Regional Emergency Communications Center which handles fire and ambulance dispatch throughout most of

Alameda County.

The following involvement illustrates ChiefMcCammon's commitment to addressing fire and emergency medical

services issues on the local, state and national levels.

Served as Immediate past President of the California Fire Chiefs Association served two years as

President Elect and two years as President. During these terms Chief McCammon lead the California

fire service through some difficult times including the selection of a new Fire and Building Code and the

Southern California Fire Siege of2003. As President, Chief McCammon testified before State Assembly

Committees and the United States Congress on issues related to homeland security and the fire service.

Appointed by Governor Gray Davis to the Emergency Response Training Advisory Committee, which

oversaw policy development related to training issues facing first responder;s responding to weapons of

mass destruction and terrorism.

• Appointed by the Governor's Director. of Homeland Security to serve on an Advisory Committee to

develop policy for the distribution of Federal Terrorism funding.

• Selected by the Governor's Director of the Office of Emergency Services (OES) to serve as a Board

Member on FIRESCOPE, the Board advising OES on mutual aid and incident management issues.

• Appointed by Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger to a Blue Ribbon Fire Commission to study and make

recommendations regarding the Fire Siege in Southern California in 2003.

• Served as Vice Chair of the Metropolitan Fire Chiefs Association. The Association represents the largest

fire departments in the United States, Canada and the world.

Page 2-(McCammon Memorial Continued) October 17, 2014

Chief McCammon was a Harvard University Fellow of the Executive Development Program for senior

governmental officials; serYed five years as the President of RotaCare of the Bay Area, a non-profit organization

which provides free medical care to the uninsured through nine clinics from San Rafael to Monterey; served as

the Site Administrator for the San Leandro Rotacare Clinic since 1995; served as a member of the San Leandro

Rotary Club; served on the Las Positas College Foundation Board of Directors.

An avid golfer, Chief McCammon leaves behind his wife, Rose Padilla-Johnson, and three children (Daniel,

Monica and Jessica), friends, and communities that loved him dearly; his legacy will live on through the

numerous programs he gave so generously to.

A visitation will be held at Graham-Hitch Mortuary (4167 First Street, Pleasanton, CA 94566) on Saturday,

October 18, 2014 from 5:00PM-8:00PM and on Sunday, October 19, 2014 from l :OOPM-4:00PM, and is open to

the public.

In lieu of flowers, donations in honor of Chief McCammon may be sent to the Davis Street Family Resource

Center at 3081 Teagarden, San Leandro, CA 94577. Donations may also be made online via,

and will be used to support the Primary Care Medical Clinic.


From Floyd Nabonne:

Bill McCammon (a.k.a. WilliMac)


In my 20 years as a San Leandro Fire Fighter, I have seen a few fellow fire fighters that God has called home at such an early age. Rod Bauman, Mike Zipton, Rich Solomon, Luster Knight, and now Bill McCammon. Being that I am now 71, I consider these all to be too young to be called home.


On March 2, 1970, I was working modified duty (8 hour days) due to a broken thumb while skiing. It was on this day at then Station 2, I had my heart attack. The crew had just left the station after lunch for district inspections, and I was alone with Chief McCammon. I was working on map drawing updates for the stations. Bill had come in to exercise using the station equipment. I came upstairs as I usually do, taking the stairs two at a time. When I reached the top, I felt this extreme pain in my chest like I had never experienced before. I lay down in the dorm hoping that would help, but the pain seemed to worsen. I went and told Bill of my problem. He asked if I was having any shortness of breath, and at this time, I was not. We both agreed that I should go home. When I arrived home, Connie was just getting ready to leave home. She immediately drove me to Eden  emergency, where they gave me two nitro pills and finally a morphine shot to get rid of the pain.


I tell this story as it pertains to many years later at a retirees luncheon put on at the firehouse on San Miguel in Castro Valley. Bill was now Chief McCammon of the Alameda county Fire Department that he so successfully helped to form.


As I was walking by him, he stopped me, asked me how I was doing, and then began apologizing for not being more diligent in taking care of me back then when I had my attack. I told him “hell the thought that I was having a heart attack never crossed my mind either.” I thanked him for his concern, and that he did nothing wrong. That will remain as one of my fond memories of him, his care and concern still with him so many years later.


My last crew was Captain Bill Wood (Woody), Fire Fighter Dan O’Hara (Dano) and I was the Engineer (Bones). Chief Mccammon was affectionately called and will always be known to me as (WilliMac).

May god bless you WilliMac and keep you close to Him.


Floyd Nabonne


9/30/2014 from Rod Mendes:

I'm sorry to hear about the passing of our brothers. I spent many shifts working for John and many miles on the road with Charles moving furniture. All good times and good memories. My condolences to the families and loved ones.

Rod Mendes


Our brother Charlie Lakes passed on 8/13/2014

9/13/2014 from Jim Lakes:

Charlie was 87 years old and retired as a captain from the Eden Consolidated Fire Department in 1982, after serving 25 years.  He was born ion Kentucky, went to school in Indiana, served in the US Army Air Corps for 3 years and received a teaching credential from Chabot College.  He also served a short time as chief of the Mo0ss Beach Fiore Department.

A recent thought of the fire service he wanted to share:  “Thanks to those who served before me: thanks to those who served with me, sometimes pushing, sometimes carrying, always helping, and good luck to those who continue on.”

His family is very proud of him and we miss him very much.

Jim Lakes.



Hello Rich,

I sure do appreciate all the time and effort you put into the Bresnan.  The newsletter keeps the memories alive.  Hope you can share this note about my Dad.  He lived a good long life and we are happy he is in a better place.

Thanks Jim




I remember Charlie from the BEST MOVING days long ago.

He was a good man………….FERG <><




9/13/2014 from Jeremy Roderick and Ken Thomey:

Rich. Ken Thomey is asking for help spreading the word. He is in search of a CSFA License Plate Topper from the 30's.  He is asking if a retiree might have a lead on this.  See his text below.  


Any help spreading the works.  Thanks. Jeremy


Thanks bro for helping me try a find one of these. I believe they started making these in the 30's and I don't know how long they made them for they are very hard to find. Thanks again………..Ken


The 2014 ACFD Recognition Ceremony will be held on Thursday, October 2, 2014, beginning at

7:00 p.m. The Recognition Ceremony will be held at the Dublin Shannon Community Center,

11600 Shannon Ave, Dublin.

We will be recognizing ACFD retirements, years of service (including Reserves), promotions

and new employees. Please join us in commemorating the accomplishments of our fellow


Please confirm your attendance by emailing or calling Sue at (925) 833-

3473xl120 by September 22, 2014.

We look forward to seeing you there.

9/2/2014 from Jerry Charlberg


To everyone in the Alameda County Fire Department family:


Thanks for a great career.  28 years have passed by very quickly and it is time to close this chapter and open a new one.  There are many memories, mostly good, that will continue to flood my memory banks on a regular basis.  People have asked about best and worst calls, best and worst stations, crews, etc., and it’s almost like picking a favorite child.  Each response, each station and crew have good aspects, each chance to interact with the people who make sure we get paid is a special opportunity.


It is true that we all will miss the daily grind when our time comes, but with the new time comes new adventures.  For those that I promised, I will get the sewing commitments complete ASAP and get everything delivered to you.  I have not forgotten, just side tracked a bit.


Again, Thank you for allowing me to serve with some of the finest firefighting personnel around.  We are fortunate to have things that others don’t; still at our operating personnel numbers, no brown outs, dozer, boats, Rescue Trucks, Type I HZMT Team, fantastic equipment and the personnel that keep us running in great shape, etc. .


It takes all of us working together to make us work.


Respectfully Submitted,

Jerry Charlberg

Badge 246-Retired

Click here for parting words from Jerry

8/6/2014 From Gary Henthorn:

Just came across this pic. Thought you could use to fill space?

Jan Bonansa, ??, Jack Lions, Jim Robison, Bruce Ghezzi,
Fred Little, Bill Klatt, Rich Brown, Mike Cysewski.



8/6/2014 from Tony Rocha:

Hi Rich,

Thanks for the great job you do on the Bresnan!

I always look forward to receiving it and seeing what all our great retirees are doing.


Take care,

Tony Rocha

8/6/2014 from Bill Peters:

Rich, I understand that is a plan in the works to put together a fire department museum.  I have a significant collection of old fire department stuff: including helmets, nozzles, fire- boxes etc. etc..  


If this is true is it possible to put me in contact with the appropriate people?


My e-mail address is:  

cell: 916-212-1700.


Hope all is well with you & yours.  Thanks for the assist.


Regards, Bill Peters


I have not heard of a museum……………FERG <><




DATE: March 20, 2014

TO: All Personnel

FROM: Lorelei Wade 

Via David A. Rocha, Fire Chief

SUBJECT: Health Benefits and Dependent Eligibility Verification (DEV) Project




Beginning in July 2013, CalPERS and HMS Employer Solutions launched the verification phase of the Dependent Eligibility Verification (DEV) Project, which requires ALL CalPERS health plan subscribers with one or more dependents to provide supporting documentation to verify their dependents' eligibility for health benefits. The Alameda County Fire Department is included in the first Public Agency active employee cycle, which begins June 2. 2014.


NOTE: Ifyou do not have dependents on your health plan, NO action is required.


If you have one or more dependents enrolled on your health plan, you are encouraged to start planning and gathering the supporting documentation (e.g., birth certificate, marriage license, etc.) to confinn eligibility of yo'ur dependent(s). During the first week of June you will receive a letter from HMS Employer Solutions providing additional details and instructions on how and where to submit this documentation. Watch the mail for your verification letter. You will have about 6-7 weeks to submit your documents to HMS Employer Solutions. Please do NOT submit your documents to Lorelei Wade, Benefits Coordinator, or to CalPERS, as this is an independent verification project.


Please review the project's Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) found on CalPERS On-Line, for definitions of eligible and ineligible dependents and the types of acceptable documents to verify eligibility for each dependent on your health plan.


If you have questions, please direct them to Lorelei Wade, Benefits Coordinator via email at lorelei . or call at 925-833-3473 Ext. 1122.




5/22/2014 from Dave Patterson:

Hi Rich,

This past December I had my 89th birthday and Dot and I celebrated our 68th wedding anniversary.  I have been retired for 35 years.

Age is taking a toll on us now as Dot is losing her eyesight and I am using a walker to get around.

We have family living not too far away and come over and do housework and run errands for us and take us shopping and to doctors’ offices.  We still maintain our home here in Lincoln with the family help.

I thank you for all you do to get the Bresnan to us retirees.  I look forward to every issue although I am saddened by the loss of so many men I worked with throughout the years.

In closing I sure wish you and yours lots of health and happiness.

God bless you,


David A. Patterson


4/10/2014 from Floyd Nabonne:

Ray Morrison


I got a call from Ray's friend Saunie. Ray fell and hit his head and is now in a nursing home. He is recouperating, but now has a bladder infection that is leaving him a little incoherent. I thought the guys might send him get well wishes, or if in the area might want to stop by for a visit. He is at the Golden Empire Nursing & Rehab, 121 Dorsey Dr., Grass Valley, Ca., 95945.




Jim Wright Passes

Retired Engineer from Castro Valley


I just received the e-mail below. It is from Jim Wright's wife. Jim was a retired engineer from Castro Valley. Until a couple months ago a number of us met once each month for lunch in Tracy. Jim was a great guy to work with. He will be missed.


Please pass on this information.


Lennie Orr


It saddens me to inform you Jim passed away this morning. (April 1)

The past couple of weeks there were some very serious setbacks and he was to the point where he was to weak to continue to go on.

Thank you for your loyal friendship to Jim. I know your friendship meant a lot to him as you all were an important part of his life.



Linda Wright

James E. Wright JR., retired in 1989 after 25 years of service from the Castro Valley Fire Department.


Jim was a resident of San Leandro, Castro Valley and Modesto, CA. He passed away the morning of April 1, 2014 at the age of 78, from complications of a stroke in which he suffered in February. 


Jim is survived by his wife Linda. He is also survived by his two children: son Matthew Wright (Liz), daughter Beth Wright-McCarty (Joel) and step-daughter Stacy Farquhar, grand children Michael Spring, Casey Wright, Ryan Farquhar and Ricky Truckner.


Jim requested that no services be held. Interment will be in the Mt. View Cemetery Mausoleum, Oakland, CA.


In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to Children's Hospital Research or your charity of choice.




4/7/2014 from Jeremy Roderick:

Hello Folks,

                If you could please help me with the below request.  This Fire Department has grown tremendously in the past 20 years.  We need to remember our roots.  I am hoping to  “Copy” photos that you have or ask that if you know of department specific items that are “loanable” to our new Admin building.

I included Michelle Unruh (formally Simpson) as she is the lead on this project.  Brad Arganbright had taken the lead in the past.  Michelle is in contact with Brad, however could use your time to document the facts of your former department.

Anyway, thank you for reading. 




Alameda County Fire

Captain Jeremy Roderick

Engine 10, C Platoon

Station # (510) 618-3470



From: Unruh, Michelle, ACFD
Sent: Friday, April 04, 2014 1:32 PM
To: Roderick, Jeremy, ACFD
Subject: Retiree Newsletter




I was hoping you could help me out on something.  One of the projects I am working on for Aisha is researching the history of our dept.  One of the best ways for me to do this is by interviewing retirees.  Yesterday I was able to spend some time at Station 13 with the crew and retired Chief Steve Brown.  He told me that it would be a good idea if we could put something in the Retiree Newsletter about anyone who might have any memorabilia they may be willing to contribute to the department, so it can be safely stored and displayed.  I am also planning on attending the Luncheon and was hoping maybe we could add that I will be there and would love to interview and listen to history and stories of the departments prior to the consolidation.  13C told me to contact you because you stay in contact with Rich Ferguson and some of the other retirees.  If this would be possible could you please let me know. 


Thank you for your time,

Michelle Unruh

4/2/2014 from Bill Caplinger:

Dear Rich,

Enclosed is a donation for the newsletter.  I really appreciate you taking the time to do all this.

Donna Mae and I are fine.  We will celebrate our 63rd wedding anniversary in a couple of weeks.  I’ll be 85 in September and Donna Mae will be 82.  Our health is OK and I’m still playing golf twice a week!!!!

We are still traveling when we can, going to Maui in June with all the family.

We now have 5 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren, Mia, 3 yrs. Old and Max, 2 months old.

Thanks again for the Newsletter. We enjoy reading all the news.

Bill Caplinger -Capy

3/3/2014 from Ryan Nishimoto:

Hi Rich, 


Retiree Bill Robertson, SLFD 1978, stopped in to visit us at station 9 today.  Attached is a picture.  We had a good time hearing some stories from yesteryear.  Please share this on the Bresnan.


Thank You,

Ryan Nishimoto

ACFFA IAFF Local #55 - Advisory Committee Chairperson


Ryan Nishimoto
ACFFA IAFF L55 - Advisory Committee Chairperson

2/28/2014 from Ryan Nishimoto:

Hello All Retirees,

If you are a PORAC health coverage subscriber, then this message may pertain to you. PORAC recently had all associations separate active members and retirees for the PORAC membership billing.  This may have led you to receive a "congratulations on your retirement" letter from PORAC in the mail.  This letter also asked for you to submit some paperwork and pay the annual PORAC association fees.  If so, please fill out and submit the paperwork and pay the fees.  ACFFA will not double bill you for the PORAC association fees, but will continue to bill you for the annual ACFFA association fees.  This is how PORAC annual association fees will be handled in the future as well.  Your coverage will not change, but PORAC wanted to differentiate active members from retirees when it comes to billing. 

The annual ACFFA association bills are late this year due to a vote coming up regarding raising membership dues for actives which will slightly increase annual dues for retirees should it pass.  Hang tight and the ACFFA will send out the bills around the end of March. Please contact me at 707-980-2006 or at if you have any questions.




Ryan Nishimoto

ACFFA IAFF L55 - Advisory Committee Chairperson



(PORAC is a health coverage plan like Kaiser and Blue Shield. It stands for peace officer research association of California)….FERG <><

Tom Castro Sr.

Died Saturday 2/8/2014

Retired Castro Valley Firefighter passed Saturday, with his family by his side, after a bout with cancer.

Response to Tom’s passing:


Hello Rich,

Very sorry to hear of the passing of Tom Castro Sr. Please pass on to
Tom Castro Jr. and his family that my thoughts and prayers are with
them today.

Joe Ferreira

2/11/2014 from Frank Sturgeon:

Hi Rich,

Thanks again for the Bresnan.  We enjoy reading it and trying to identify who the pictures are.

Arline and I are both doing well.  No major complaints.

The golf game has slipped a little but I still play at least three times a week.

Say “Hello” to all those who remember us.



2/10/2014 from Lynn Staysa:

Thank you for a great newsletter.  We enjoy it!!

Don Stays busy with the ranch, playing golf & being a director for Livermore Rodeo.  Never a dull moment.  Did I mention hunting also?


2/7/2014 from Jim Dorpinghaus:

Hi, Ferg,

Got the most recent Bresnan and read with much interest of your trip to visit family in Davenport, Iowa over the Christmas holiday. It was good to note you made it without hitting very much weather. But, 16 below will get your attention, real quick. Take it from an old Iowan who delivered papers in his home town when the temps dipped to minus 20 a few times. It didn't take much to realize a person needed to keep moving--bet on it!!!

I was aware Jennifer lived in Iowa, but was never sure just where til getting the Bresnan. I have a niece living in Davenport who is an RN at the Genesis Hospital. If Jennifer is also a nurse, it's possible they may know each other if they both work at the same hospital. My niece’s name is Julie Nevill. It would be a small world if there is a connection.

Am still trying to master the workings of a computer, but am not making a whole lot of progress. I recall the first time I sat down to one of these blasted units with you as my mentor. Our station had become the information center for the county in the event of a hazardous spill to relay to the units in the field on how to handle the problem and wanted anyone with typing ability to get to know the computer. So, you began giving me some pointers, most of which I didn't understand and showed me the program to work as part of the learning experience. I did my best to follow the instructions down to the dotted 'i" and crossed "t's". When I completed the input, you told me to hit a certain key and when I did, the darned thing played YANKEE DOODLE DANDY!!! You grinned, making the comment I had made a mistake somewhere along the way, and I fully agreed. My mistake had been sitting down to the computer, learning how to turn it "on" and all I wanted from you was how to turn it "off"!!! It doesn't take a rocket scientist to determine they gave me a different assignment!! Those were some fun days, for sure!!

Doris and I are doing pretty well out here in the valley. We did latch onto a flu bug in late November which has hung on for the better part of 2 months. This was in spite of having the flu shot and given a prescription of antibiotics. Am pleased to say we are finally past it and feeling better. Too, if there is a positive note in this, it's that I dropped 6 pounds--and it came off in the RIGHT place--strange but true!!

Am enclosing a check as it's been some time since I last sent any. I also want to thank you for your dedication in getting the latest Fire Dept. news out to we old timers. Many names are still recognized, but the ranks of the old SLFD are getting smaller. Presume that is but one part of the progress factor. Also, my congratulations to Dave Rocha. He was my replacement at old station 3 on Marina when I retired going on 25 years ago. Dave has come a long way and will be good for the department he will head. A good man, indeed!!

We hope this finds every one doing well at this time, so a big HELLO from Doris and I, take care and may God bless---!!!

Respectfully submitted,


Jim Dorpinghaus


2/4/2014 from Gary Henthorn:

Hi Rich,

Still riding my dirt bike, mountain bike and camping as much as I can.

Watchin’ one granddaughter 4 days a week.  Soon (week or two) Sheri will have a baby boy for me to watch also.

My son Kyle has two boys I see once in a while too.

Thanks for doing the publication.  Really enjoy reading it, getting caught up.

Best wishes,

Gary H.

2/1/2014 from Terry Givens:


Wanted to get my check in for the newsletter.  I just bought a cabin on one and a half acres in Pollock Pines and have been very busy renovating.

Thanks again,

Terry Givens

I heard that John Buchter , old Castro Valley Fire, passed away on December 15.
That is all of the information I have.
If you have any more news please let me know.
I will be on the road for the next couple weeks but I will try to keep you all updated if I get any more info.

FERG <><

1/13/2014 from Pat Corbierre:

Happy Birthday, Rich.  I think you had yours the same month as me. Boy are we getting up there. I was going to tell the story of Siggy and the suites but decided to wait awhile. I thought it might not be appropriate just yet.  Give my love to all the guys. It hard for me to get down there too often.



12/15/2013 from Norm Silva:

Hi Rich,

I came across an old picture of someone that the old Castro Valley Firemen might remember.

This is Charlie Johnson.  It was 1955

The engine is a Ford chassis with a Van Pelt body.

This was my first year.  Time flies.


P>S. It has a 6 cylinder engine. Gutless.

Paul Smith Passes

Paul E. Smith
June 25, 1928 – December 5, 2013
Resident of San Leandro

Paul died in his sleep in the early morning hours on Dec. 5th at the age of 85, after a three year illness. 

He was born in Rich Hill Missouri. He and his parents sold their farm in 1942, moving to Oakland to work in the shipyards. Paul graduated from Fremont High School. He served in the Army for two years, stationed in Germany. Paul married Wilma Ramage in 1953.

After working in the City of Oakland Parks Department, Paul became a San Leandro fireman in 1957. Paul and Wilma moved to San Leandro at that time. He retired as a Captain in 1984, having had a very fulfilling career.

Paul was a long time member of the Sequoyah Community Church in Oakland. He was energized by the challenge of organizing and implementing estate sales, as well as the antique business.

Paul is survived by his wife, Wilma. He is also survived by his two children: Pamela DeCarli (Dave) and Steve Smith (Karen), grand children Jordan and William DeCarli, Aaron (Lena) and Ryan (Kristen) Smith, as well as his infant great granddaughter Anjuli

Born 6/25/1928
Entered SLFD 7/16/1957
Engineer 5/1/1969
Captain 10/16/1973
Retired 6/31/1984
Died 12/5/2013

Response to Paul passing:



Hi Rich,....I remember "Smitty" when he joined the SLFD.  I had been on 7 or 8 years.  Though I never worked directly with him I did have contact with him through WALNUTS.  Unusual I know.  His parents had walnut trees and I knew people who liked them as well as my wife and I, so I used to buy them from him.  Over years I purchased property in Lake County that had Walnut trees on it.  His folks sold their property and I in turn started selling them back to him.  An ironic turn of events.  I sold them for years until I started having pest problems and I discontinued selling them.  That was the one connection I had with "Smitty".  We did have a connection other than the Fire Dept. and we had a good relationship other than work.


     I was sorry to hear that he had passed away, but my condolences to his family and hope that he rests in peace.


Bill Robertson


I had some very good years working with Paul at Estudillo Station.

He was a good man.

FERG <><



12/6/2013 from FERG:

We went to Disneyland for our 13th anniversary.  Happened to bump into Dave & Gail Wheeler.

12/3/2013 from Ralph Johnson:

Ken Davison and George Bungarz on the deck at Ralph Johnson's home in Paradise after the memorial service for Evan "Siggy" Siggelkow on November 2, 2013.

Kay Dana: passed away on Friday 10/4

This is Brian Dana (Kay Dana’s oldest son) writing to you. 

As some of you are already aware my Dad had been diagnosed with an untreatable brain tumor in July of this year.  Dad had a couple of very good months after being diagnosed and was able to see and speak with many of his friends and family during that time which was a real blessing during an otherwise difficult time.  Unfortunately Dad passed away on Friday 10/4.  The last couple of days were rough, but he was not in any pain throughout his illness and passed away peacefully with Roger and me at his side.   We will be holding a memorial service at:

11am on Friday 11/1 at the Three Crosses Church located at 20600 John Drive, Castro Valley CA 94546 with a remembrance lunch immediately following.

Please note that I do not check this email address very frequently, but I can be reached directly at or at 510.881.1904.

PS In lieu of flowers, Dad would have appreciated a small donation to the Salvation Army or the American Cancer Society.


Response to Kay passing:


Hi Rich,


I just got back from vacation and saw the message about Kay Dana. I'm, so sorry to hear about him.  He was one of the nicest guys I worked with in the department. I have no doubt his spirit is in a happy place. The sadness is ours for losing his presence among us.  Our timelines are managed by God that's why we should make the most of each moment and be thankful for each moment we are given.  Kay will be in my prayers this day and his family.



patrick corbiere




Thanks for the information Ferg.  I remember Kay well.  Before He joined the SLFD he was a salesman and wanted to join the Fire Dept.  He would show up at the stations and talk to everyone in the place, and we would encourage him and help him with any information we could.  He came to me may times after and remarked how grateful he was that we gave him as much help as we could and encouragement as we did.  He was a very dedicated Fireman and I hope that he will rest in peace. I always liked Kay as a person and will remember him as the real nice human being that he was...


Bill Robertson




Hi Rich,


Thanks for the information on Kay. Kay and I worked at San Leandro #4 together for many years. He was always a pleasure to be around. He always had a positive attitude and a kind word for everyone.


Joe Ferreira




10/21/2013 from Bruce Ghezzi:

Hi Rich,

Thanks again for all your work on the Bresnan.  I always look forward to reading it.



Evan Lavern Siggelkow (Siggy)

Born 9/29/1929

Hired SLFD 6/1/1958

Engineer 5/16/1967

Captain 1/1/1970

Retired 12/31/1985

Died 9/27/2013

He is survived by his wife Ginny whom he married In 2001 and her extended family. He is also survived by his daughters Susan Hensley of Dublin, CA and Linda Smit of Suriname, south America; grandchildren, Shannon and Alex Hensley, Sharon Ristino. Ryan Smit and David Smit. Evan was preceded in death by his first wife Wanda.

Evan was born on Sept. 29. 1929 In Boise. ID. He graduated from Richmond High School and began attending UC Berkeley until he was drafted in the Army. After 3 years In the Army, he returned to UC Berkeley to finish his education and graduated in 1955 with a degree In Business. He served 30 years with the San Leandro Fire Dept. and retired as a Fire Captain.

He was an avid fisherman, golfer and loved to travel. He loved his family and church family.

Services will be held Nov. 2, 2013 at 11:00 AM at Craig Memorial Congregational Church in  Paradise, CA.

In lieu of flowers, donations can be made in his memory to Craig Memorial Congregational Church,

5665 Scottwood Rd. Paradise, CA 95969. Arrangements entrusted to the Neptune society of No CA, Chico Branch.


Response to Siggy passing:



Siggy was the first firefighter I came across when I was taking the test for SLFD.  My father-in-law was a court reporter and new Siggy.  I went to see him at the station and he and his crew gave me a practice oral interview.  They were very nice to me and I think I got the job because of their help.  John Harrington was one of the crew that helped me.

FERG <><



Thanks Ferg,

Siggy was a great friend and co-worker. Nancy and I had many fond memories of Siggy and his wife, Wanda, fly fishing and boating on the Klamath River for many years.

Thanks for the info and all you do through the Bresnan keeping us old SLFD guys informed.

Steve Mikinka


Hi Ferg..


     Wanted to pass on this information.  I attended Ryder’s services In Magalia along with my son and grandson.  My son knew Hal well and wanted to attend.  While there I met with Ralph Johnson, whom I hadn't seen in a number of years and really didn't recognize at first.  I also met Dale Valentine and his wife who I hadn't seen for quite a few years.  Ralph informed me that Siggy was there also, but who had left before I could speak to him.  I was sorry to hear of his passing and more so that I had just missed seeing him and Ginny.. 

     Siggy and I worked together at different times, but the last time was at the old Station 1 on Estudillo.  We worked well together, he was my captain and I drove Engine 1 for my last years in the department.  That was some time ago, as I retired in 1978.  Yes I’m still kicking around.  Just turned 88 last month.. I'm sorry that I missed seeing him. Had to be by just a few minutes.  The only two men left that I haven't heard from are Roy Jones and Joe Neves.  We are the last alive that I know of who were hired and started working on March 16, 1949.

      Hope that Siggy's wife reads this and knows that I had hoped to see him and her in Magalia, I guess it wasn't meant to be.  My condolences to you any way.


Bill Robertson



HORACE A. RYDER, JR. Horace A. Ryder, Jr. passed away Sept. 6, 2013 at his home in Magalia, CA. Hal, as he was known, son of the late Horace and Lydia (Lutz) Ryder and brother of the late Winona (Ryder) Studarus, was born in Oak Park, IL on October 26, 1922. He grew up in Oakland, CA and graduated from University High School. He resided in the Bay Area for most of his life. Hal enlisted in the draft at 18 years old into the Army Air Corp at Yosemite National Park. He joined the Air Force in 1942 and served his country for four years. In 1956 Hal joined the San Leandro Fire Dept and retired after twenty-five years in 1981. 'All done in '81" he used to say. In 1987 Hal married his lovely bride, Sidney (Bertain) Ryder and together they enjoyed going to Arizona in the winters in their RV. Hal and Sid moved to Magalia in 1993. He was a member of the Elks Lodge and volunteered at Feather River Hospital since 2002. In 2007, Hal was honored with the sword of the Louis Bertain family for his great character and achievements in life. Hal loved life and was constantly busy. Never one to sit still, he had many hobbies, he especially loved to fish, read, make stained glass, work in the yard and play bridge. Hal also loved spending time with friends and family, he had many stories to tell and was known for his one-liners. He will always be loved and remembered. Hal is survived by his loving wife of twenty-five years, Sidney (Bertain) Ryder; his caring daughters, Susan Weir, Carol Rohifing, Peggy Parker, and Shirley Sullivan (Richard); ten grandchildren, and eight great-grandchildren. Hal is also survived by his extended family through his wife Sid; her son Gary Lovelace (Leota), her daughter Patti Smith (Jeff), and her son Darn Lovelace, and five grandchildren. The family requests that any donations be made in his memory to the Paradise Hospice House, 1289 Billy Road, Paradise, CA 95969, 530-877-8755, Celebration of his life will take place on Saturday September 21, 2013 at 11 AM in the Old Magalia church. Arrangements are under the direction of Chapel of the Pines mortuary. -


Response to Hal Ryder passing:




I have some fond memories of working with both Bob Nolan and Hal Ryder. They were both good fire fighters and could relax when in the station.

Bob was the cook at then station 4 (143rd av.) when I worked with him. His goal was to make the dinners for no more than $2.00 per man. He would make a good dessert from scratch using the station staples for which we had already paid for with our monthly station assessment.

There were times when he would be cooking that I would see him with a cigarette in his mouth (you could smoke in the fire house back then) and a length of ash hanging off the end. Soon the ash would be gone, and I assumed it was part of his seasoning process.


I was also assigned to then station one (Estudillo av.) That’s where I worked with Hal.

He and Rod Bauman talked me into trying skiing. Hal had a hall runner laid out in the engine room and lent me some ski boots and skis. I would then practice doing kick turns with the skis on. Never crossed my mind then as to what I would do if we had a call at that time.

Hal had a mischievous laugh that you got to know when he was up to something. When the ski boots he lent me fell apart on the ski slope. He had a good laugh and then told me that they had broken once before and he glued the sole plate back on.

When we left the resort, he had placed the boots on the bumper of his truck, figuring they would fall off somewhere on the way home. People would pull alongside of him and yell and make motions for him to roll down the window to tell him the boots where there. He would start that laugh of his and just smile and wave at them until they would drive away frustrated. He marveled at the fact that the boots stayed there all the way home, even saying that he would bet that if those were good boots, either one or both would be gone on the trip home.

I am really sorry I could not make it to either or their funerals.


Floyd Nabonne




Hi Rich,


It is always sad to hear of one of our fellow Firefighters passing. Hal was definitely one of a kind. I remember skiing with him on many occasions and looking up to see him going down the slopes backwards or doing spins, all the time laughing that crazy laugh. Some great memories of old times R I P Hal, I'll pull your finger next time I see you.

Steve Gross



Hi Rich,

Just read in the Bresnan about Hal Ryder’s passing. Hal was a great guy and a pleasure to work with. I fondly remember when I entered the SLFD and was introduced to Hal he informed me that there were to many “Hals” in the Dept. so from now on will call you, “Ham”, a nickname I have cherished and use to this day,

Hal you will be missed,

Harold (Ham) Hamilton       



Thanks Ferg. 

Would appreciate any updates you can provide when you get them.


Steve Mikinka



Thanks Rich for notifying me. I had received word from his wife as I was close with Hal and his wife Sid.  I was waiting to hear about services from her.  I don't know how many of the members both retired and active, knew that Hal was the instigator of the initial Breakfast for Retirees.  He and I initially worked on it and he carried through with setting everything up.  He checked out all of the places that we met, Dick's in San Leandro, Doug's in Castro Valley etc.  He and I have been friends for at least 60 years.  We took trips together, vacationed with our families and enjoyed each other's company all these years.  I was just up to his home last summer and spent a couple of days with him and Sid.  I will truly miss my very good friend.  Thanks again for your concern and for notifying me anyway.  I really appreciate it.  Hal had just turned 90 and I’m right behind him... I will be 88 on the 12th.  If I do hear of any type of service, I will contact you.....Fraternally --- Bill Robertson 




Hi Rich,

Thank you for the news about Hal. Good to see you the other day.


Joe Ferreira




I’m sorry to hear about the passing of Hal. He was, a great guy and I fought a lot of fire with him and shared many meals at the fire house. My condolence to everyone.


Rod Mendes



In loving memory of

Robert Eugene Nolan

September 27, 1932 through August 28, 2013


 Robert Eugene Nolan was born of Adelle McCormack and George Nolan in Oakland, California in 1932.

In 7th grade he fell in love with Maureen Healy. They were married in 1955 and together they lovingly raised Laura, Larry and Linda. Bob is a veteran of the United States Air Force (1951-1954), former US Postal worker, and retired San Leandro Fireman (1961-1989). Married fifty-seven years to Moe, they have eight grandchildren and currently one great-grandchild.










Response to Bob Nolan Passing:


I remember when I found one of the oldest hydrants in San Leandro in my district.  It was from the 1890’s.  I went by there one day and found that someone had replaced it with a brand new one.  Bob Nolan was at my station that day because he was working fire prevention at the time.  He heard me tell about the hydrant and then got right in his car and went to the water company.  When he got there he searched the place and finally found the hydrant hidden under a work bench.  Someone had already sand-blasted it and painted it red (probably intending to take it home).  Bob took the hydrant and brought it back to me.  The last time I was at the station on Estudillo, the hydrant was still in the front foyer.

FERG <><




 Shocked to hear of Bob Nolan. Is there an address for Maureen I might send a card to?

Tom Boggs


“Here is the address:

2305 Kingfisher Lane

Lincoln, CA 95648-8748….FERG <><”



Sadly I read this and think of how fun it was to work with Bob. He was a charismatic man with a good heart. "Oh Baby" will surely be missed by me. I enjoyed his company and his many talents. My condolences to his family and friends.

Rod Mendes


8/9/2013 from Frank Giuntoli

Hi Rich,

You are doing a super job with the newsletter.  We need some names on the pictures if it’s easy to do.

Thank you,


Frank Giuntoli

8/8/2013 from Theresa Railsback:

Hi There:  I would like to put in a change of address for the Bresnan please.  It is for Bob Waberski.  I have moved Dad up to our home in Jackson. The address is 12900 Pioneer Dr. Jackson CA 95642. 


Thank you for the time you put into sending out the newsletter.  Dad worked at C.V.F.D. until it's consolidation.  I think I enjoy getting the newsletter as much as he does. 




Theresa Railsback


8/5/2013 from Joe Banchero:

Rich, just got back from visit with Bill Wood up in Bend Ore.  While up there we did a hike up to the top of South Sisters.

Here's a picture of us at the top 10,500'.    It was a training hike for our Mt Whitney hike on Aug 27th.

Here's one more celebrating Bills 59th birthday.

Glad your trip turned out well


Joe Banchero


6/13/2013 from Ralph Johnson:

Hal Ryder fell and broke his hip on June 6th, surgery went very well and he is now in a Rehab Center for Physical Therapy. He will be there from 2 to 4 weeks.


Horace (Hal) Ryder)

Cypress Healthcare Center

1633 Cypress Lane

Room 104A

Paradise, CA. 95969

There is no phone in the room and no cell coverage in the area. So

snail mail is the best, or send it to me and I will deliver it with a big Hug.


5/21/2013 from Rod Mendes:

Hi Richard


As I look at the pictures of the retiree’s luncheon, I can still hear their voices in my head, and it makes me so proud to have worked with all of those present. It’s an eye opener for me, as I move into my 45th year of public service. Now and then I get a phone call or a note from someone from my past. I have 2 of 4 sons, both on USFS Interagency Hotshot Crews, Dale and Jeremiah, that continue to run into folks across the country that always asks "how’s your dad". That’s scary. Maybe I've been in the business to long. But then again as I always say, it’s a passion, and I know that all of those present at the luncheon have the passion as well. It doesn’t go away because you retire or get older.  I am so proud to have been part of such a wonderful group of individuals. In my heart, I know that my career couldn’t have been any better than the time I spent in San Leandro. What a great tradition. Tell everyone that may remember me, hello. I'm still in the Northern California living on the Hoopa Indian Reservation. I will be 62 (secretly 39) in November and still responding. Respect to you all.


Rod Mendes, Chief

Office of Emergency Services

Hoopa Tribe

Hoopa CA

Inline image 1



Rod Mendes, Director

Office of Emergency Services

Hoopa Valley Tribe

Hoopa CA 95546


5/21/2013 from Dan O’Hara:

Hi Rich,

Thank you for all your time and dedication for the Retirees. This month’s newsletter was great to read, I appreciate it.  Here a little something other then news about someone dying. 


In April, Loretta and I took a trip to Bradenton & St. Augustine Florida, Savannah Georgia, and Charleston South Carolina.  Here are 4 pictures, one from each place we visited. 


Dan O'Hara



5/21/2013 from T.J. Welch:

Capitola has a nice car show on June 8-9. It is sponsored by our Public Safety Foundation.  The city closes off the Esplanade area by the beach and there will be around 350 cars on display. It’s a good show!! If you are interested in coming I will be doing a BBQ at my house from 1-3. You are welcome to bring the family and park at my place which is within walking distance to town. All I ask is to let me know ahead of time so I can get you a parking pass and to make sure I have enough food. There may even be a familiar looking local politician hanging around.


Thanks to Jim and Kathy Derickson for the First In Car Club emails.


TJ Welch

Alameda County Fire Department

Battalion 2

W (510)670-5878

C (510)693-3419


5/1/2013 from Nate Mar:

Alameda County Firefighters

SUBJ: Rowell Ranch Friday MAY 10th

MSG: Nate Mar Needs Your Support! Sign up to participate on the ACFFA L55 Chili Cook Off Team. June 10, 5-8pm at Rowell Ranch. Contact Nate at 22B. Thank You

Please call Nate Mar at 22B to sign up for our team

4/30/2013 from Chuck Palmer:

All ACFD Family,

It is with a heavy heart and that I inform you of the passing of former LBNL and ACFD  Firefighter Harold Blair.


Harold starter his firefighting career with the Lawrence Berkeley Lab Fire Department on 8-8-73 and joined the Alameda County Fire Department in August 2002 when the two agencies consolidated.  Retiring on December 16, 2007, Harold gave 34 years of his life devoted to the Fire Service.  While Harold had been experiencing some medical issue of late, his passing was completely unexpected and his family is at a loss. 


The Family is planning a viewing for Harold on May 7th and the funeral on May 8th.

Once everything is finalized, I will let everyone know.

Please keep Harold in your thoughts.



Charles Palmer, Battalion Chief, Alameda County Fire Department

510-618-3446 Office, Battalion 4

510-693-3414 Cell

Don Robarge:

Don passed away 4/7/2013 at 5:00 pm. He suffered complications from Pneumonia. He was 96.


Assistant Chief Don Robarge (11/10/1916-04/07/2013). Chief Robarge started with the San Lorenzo Fire Department and retired from the Eden Consolidated Fire Protection District on November 30, 1981

4/14/2013 from Jeremy Roderick:


To All,
I am very grateful, respectful and honored to have had the opportunity to be part of the Fire Service and it's rich traditions.
Never before have I known a more professional group of heads up, stand up, quality individuals as I've seen in the Fire Service- especially the ACFD.
Each and every one of you from Admin to our newest Firefighters’ make the Fire Service a better place in your own way.
Stay AWARE, Stay SAFE,
Respectfully, Dan Robinson
A proud member of the ACFD (retired)

4/9/2013 from Ralph Johnson:

Daryl Karg and Dave Cameron info:

Just heard about Darryl Karg and Dave Cameron, thought you might like to know?




Hi Ralph


I'm the bearer of bad news. Darryl had a stroke the day before Easter. He is in Kaiser ' walnut Creek and getting better. Then, on Sunday Dave fell and hit his head and is in Kaiser, Hayward. It was a combo of high blood sugar and low blood pressure that caused him to fall. His diabetes is really getting bad.


You damn firemen are all falling apart. Hope all is well with you.




4/9/2013 from Jeremy Roderick:

Congrats to Josh and Meagan Perry on the birth of their first child.  Mom and newborn Jace are doing well.  Details listed below:

Name:  Jace Kevin Perry.

DOB: April 1, 2013

Weight and size: 7 lbs 15 oz. and 19 inches long. 



3/29/2013 from Kay Dana:

Hello Rich:


Sad to hear of Paul Smith having problems.    Wondering if you might give me his phone no. so that I could say hi to him.    If this is a good idea please

let me know.   He is a super guy and I would love to let him know that I am thinking of and praying for him.


Thanks for keeping Bressie going and I hope things are not too bad in your life just now.   Doing fine on this end and enjoying life – but have lots of

friends not doing well – keeps me busy checking up on their status.


                                                                    Best regards from Kay Dana



TO: All Personnel

Lorelei Wade

SUBJECT: CalPERS Dependent Eligibility Verification (DEV) Project

This memorandum is to inform you of an upcoming" CalPERS project regarding dependent health coverage for CalPERS health plan subscribers. In an effort to help control health care costs, Alameda County Fire Department is working with CalPERS to ensure that all dependents enrolled in a CalPERS health plan are eligible for coverage.

If you are a primary health plan subscriber with one or more dependents, you will soon receive a letter from CalPERS with further details on the DEV project, including dependent eligibility criteria and an Amnesty Disenrollment Document. This document will ask you to identify any ineligible dependents who should be removed from coverage. If you wish to take advantage of the amnesty period and remove those dependents from your health plan who do not meet the eligibility criteria, you must complete and submit the Amnesty Disenrollment Document (available after March 15th, 2013) and send to the Benefits Coordinator - Lorelei Wade, in Fire Administration prior to June 30, 2013 to allow for timely processing.

The initial phase of the DEV project includes an amnesty period that runs from now through June 30, 2013. During this specified period of time, we encourage you to review the definition of an eligible dependent and identify any dependents currently on your health plan who do not meet the eligibility criteria. Those dependents that should be removed from coverage will be disenrolled on a prospective (future) basis. This avoids the risk that coverage could be cancelled retroactively. Amnesty, as used in this communication, does not apply to employer-initiated disciplinary action for wrongful conduct or criminal investigations, if applicable.

Starting in July 2013, CalPERS will launch the Dependent Eligibility Verification project, which will require all employees with one or more dependents on their health plan to provide supporting documentation of their dependents' eligibility for health benefits.

If you have questions regarding this information, please review the DEV project information on CalPERS On-Line at

3/14/2013 from Ryan Nishimoto:

Hi Rich,

I have more info that can be placed on the Bresnan if you choose:

The CalPERS Dependent Eligibility Verification (DEV) Project will begin shortly. CalPERS will be sending you information asking you to verify the eligibility of all dependents under your medical coverage. Please contact me if you need assistance. Thanks and take care.

Ryan Nishimoto

ACFFA IAFF Local #55 - Advisory Committee Chairperson


2/27/2013 from Fred Biscotti:

Well I guess it’s time I paid my dues.  The paper on line is great. The old faces and names seem to fade with time, but it is still a good news source.

Just to let you know, it’s been 7 years since the cancer and still around.



216/2013 from Rod & Beth Souza:

Here’s a little money for the Bresnan.  Hope everything is going well.  We are busy with grandkids and 4 dogs.

Rod & Beth

2/13/2013 from Elmer Raphael:

Elmer Raphael, Old Alameda County Fire Patrol 1985-1985,

I’m 82 years old and doing OK.  Retired 27 years now.  Would like to hear from my old crew.

Home: 209-881-3200

Cell: 209-480-0635

Still able to bag a good buck on my 80th birthday.

I enjoy your newsletter.


Elmer Raphael


1/13/2013 from Jeremy Roderick:

Congrats to Eric and Celeste Frago on the birth of their first child Jace Douglas Frago, born at 00:54 hrs 1/10/13. He is 7lbs 2 oz and 21 inches long.

Eric has graciously offered to get up for all night time feedings, as he’s never been one who likes to sleep very much. Celeste is a very lucky woman in that regard.


12/28/2012 from Paul Murphy:

Subject: My retirement and my thanks

It is with mixed emotions I announce my retirement from ACFD. There are many great, good, talented people here with many gifts and I will miss all of you. I will miss miss working on a team, being together, working hard, accomplishing goals. However, it is time to go. This job, in many ways, is a young man's job. 30 years is enough and I am leaving healthy. Having survived colon cancer and firefighting, healthy is a huge accomplishment. As an academic, having been given the nickname "Professor", it is truly an honor to be called a firefighter. To be honored by, to be talked about in the same breaths by those that I value and admire, touches my heart and soul. I have been part of your team, this noble profession.

Thank you to the storytellers, who help us laugh, remember, cry and sometimes grimace. Thank you to all the characters, the jokesters, the FNGs, the FOGs, the OFNGs, (and those in between), the family guys, the listeners and talkers. (We could put names to the titles, but.............,) Thank you to all who sat around the communal table, sharing a cup of coffee, a meal, most importantly, their time. I will miss you all. Thank you to all the behind-the-scenes people, the office staff. mechanics, admin, the people on the shifts before you etc who get little or no praise when things run smoothly or "are" the way they should be. (Murfisms: No one sees the messes you clean up; no one sees the accidents (problems) you prevent.)

Thank you to the hands-on people; that can make chain-saws sing and ladder trucks dance; Thank you to the instructors, the area specialists, past and present, that fine tune us, direct us, make us not only know, but enable us to do. Thank you to all the hardworking energizer bunnies, that are seemingly unstoppable. Thank you to the practical, that can see through the ...and reach and/or work towards a solution. Thank you to those who possess gifts I do not have or gifts I barely have an inkling about, and share them still. Thank you for those who bring out my "A" game. (Remember- complacency kills!)

Thank you to those who overlooked or appreciated, (overlooked and appreciated?) my "shortcomings" my idiocycracies, my character flaws. Who laughed at them with me; who forgave them; and let my gifts come out in spite of them. We all have gifts, have you used yours today? Better yet, have you pulled out, (praised) someone else's gift?

I would be remiss if I did not thank a few specifically; Thank you Lennie Orr for asking me if I wanted to apply for the Hazmat openings when the original JPA fell apart. Thank you Rich Brown and John McClintok for saving my life with scene awareness, forearms to my chest stopping me from putting my foot on a possibly "charged" guardrail. (A high tension wire had fallen 200 yards or so away from us, across the bridge and also the canal laying across the other end of the guardrail.) Thank you John Skokan for starting me down this road with "You'd make a good fireman" over 30 years ago.

Anyone who knows me, who has worked with me, knows I could go on and on and on. Then go on some more, and a little more too. This list would have numerous names on it, with numerous stories attached to each name, but it is time to go. Thank you all.

Stay safe. Practice and preach safety.


12/26/2012 from Robin Gomez (Ron Johnson’s daughter:

Called my parents tonight and they told me that they were in a small accident on the way to a potluck dinner at church. They hit a patch of ice and slid (mom said it seemed like slow motion) towards the side of the road. As the passenger side of the car went up the embankment and forward motion stopped, the car then rolled onto the driver’s side. Right after this happened, a Battalion Chief from the fire department coming in the opposite direction, saw what happened and parked his car right behind them in case anyone else hit the same spot and slid. The next car that came by, did exactly that and slid right into his car, but my parent's car was not hit. Others stopped and were able to help my mom out of her seat belt and out her window (which was not above her) and onto the road and then my dad was able to get out. After the tow truck took their car away, they were given a ride home. Mom's potato salad survived the crash and they got into their truck and arrived at their dinner only 3 minutes late. So glad they are alright and they definitely saw God was looking out for them!

12/26/2012 from Judy (Roy Jones’ daughter-in-law)

Hi Rich,

This is my “Family Letter”.  It gives you more information about Roy without mentioning his memory problems, but one thing is quite clear to him.  He has heard from several firefighters since your article in the Bresnan.  He is delighted.  Patrick Corbiere, who lives in this area, even came to see him and they named all the names. 

Thank you for this unexpected happiness!


12/12/2012 from Paul Smith:

Hi Rich,

Not sure when I last paid the Bresnan.  I do enjoy getting it.  Trust that this will bring me up to date.

I am having some serious health issues but trust God to see me thru.


12/9/2012 from Jeremy Roderick:

Save the date.


Chief Kerstetter will be rolling up his bed roll and taking it home forever. His last official day is Dec 25th, but he didn’t want to have the party on Christmas. He will be retired but will return on Jan 11th. for some nice stories and cake. More to follow… JRO.


12/8/2012 from Pat Corbiere:

Hey Rich,

I just had lunch with Roy Jones, his wife and stepdaughter. Roy is still going strong and even though he said he still has his plane, he's not flying now. We talked about the ole' San Leandro guys and how we enjoyed what we did. I had my first fire and medical with Roy. The engineers on that crew were Frank Sturgeon and Ray Brant and the fire fighters were Emil Santos and Vern Avilla. A great crew that was in the ole' snake pit on Davis St. Roy and his wife live up here in the Northwest in Granite Falls, Washington about thirty minutes from me. If anybody wants to write him, it's 115 Noble Way, Granite Falls. I'm sure he would appreciate any mail. Kathy and I are doing fine here spoiling our dogs. My oldest son, Aaron is busy working for a big contractor doing FEMA emergency jobs on Long Island because of hurricane Sandy. He'll be there a long time. From what he says, it's really a big mess and a lot of people were financially hurt. Well, Merry Christmas and don't forget the reason for the season, guys.

Pat & Kathy


12/6/2012 from Cynthia Cologross:

Thank you for keeping up with all the “Guys” even tho I don’t recognize most of them.  Are they getting old? or I guess it’s me! John retired in ’89-WOW.

Merry Christmas Rich,

Cynthia Cologross

12/6/2012 from Bob Moore:


Humdinger of a job you’re doing.

Thank you.

12/4/2012 from Ed Laudani:

Hi Rich,

Thanks for the “Bresnan”.  It is great to hear about those that I worked with, and to learn about people from the past.

Thanks for the work on the Bresnan.

Ed Laudani

11/27/2012 from Rod Mendes:


My hats off to you for continuing to send out the newsletter and sharing all those wonderful pictures. You don’t need to say anything. For me, looking at some of those familiar faces still brings to my mind all the great years I had working in San Leandro. I can hear their voices, even though I haven’t talked to them in years. I remember how warm and wonderful it was being part of the fire family. I just finished teaching a Command and General Staff class to Placer County Fire Chiefs. Seeing Dave Wheeler for the second time in 2 years is always a treat. We talk and reminisce about a lot of folks and it’s always fun. Retired in 1995 from San Leandro, but still behind the axe and giving back as much as I can before I pull the plug. Retirement is great, I know because I have done it twice now and I still can’t leave it alone. I might try to leave it for good in another year, but then again, maybe not. My life, my passion is the job. Yes, I love my family, my wife and children, but the true mistress in my life is the sound of the siren wailing in the dead of night. I can’t think of anything else I would rather do, except maybe do it again if I could. Good luck to all of you and have a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. Stay alert, stay focused and stay healthy.

Much Respect

Rod Mendes


10/5/2012 from daughter of Roy Jones:

My stepdad is 93 and still enjoys your newsletters. Recently he moved to Washington. Could you change his address?

Roy Jones

115 Noble Way

Granite Falls WA 98252

Hi Judy,

Thanks for the update. I hope he is doing OK.

FERG <><


Hi Ferg,

Roy’s doing really great - for his age. But he remembers his time as Captain of the San Leandro Fire Department fondly and proudly.

Thank you for your really fine newsletter!


10/11/2012 from Carl Scallin:


Hope I’m caught up with this check!

Enjoy the “Bresnan”.

I retired in May of 1991 – 21 years and in good health.

Capt. Carl Scallin, “Ret”!

10/7/2012 from Rick Salaices:

Hi Rich,

I want say congratulations to Kevin on your upcoming retirement. You will love it. I used to have a few email addresses but my computer crashed a while back and they were lost. My email address is: . I would love to communicate with anyone from the department who wants to drop me a line. It's hard to believe that this December I will have been retired for six years already. God Bless and talk to you soon.

Rick Salaices


10/6/2012 update from Kevin Dugan:

Ron called to let me know that his Father passed away peacefully at home this morning surrounded by his family. As per my last E-mail we had been on him on 9/27 the /12 . His services are set for

Grace Baptist Church

October 13th 2012 11:00

San Leandro (unincorporated) 1481 162nd Ave cross of Mateo.


Kevin Dugan 12A

Work 618-3472

Cell 461-3793


10/6/2012 from Kevin Dugan:


Thanks again for Ron‘s Phone number. I spoke with him and he wanted to let people know how he appreciates the thoughts and prayers as his Father is in Hospice and is comfortable at home. We responded on him on 9/27 and he spent time at Eden before being sent home. He is 96 Y/O and having been on him before he is one tough guy with strong faith.



Kevin Dugan 12A (But short)


10/5/2012 from Rick Salaices:

Hi Rich,

I just checked out the website and wow it is great. I hope all of my brothers and sisters in ACFD are doing well. Congratulations to Kathy on the birth of your twins. Another WOW!!! I miss actually doing the job. Going on calls, etc. Retirement is great and as I always say "I highly recommend it to everyone". Ha Ha.  The Lord has blessed me and my family abundantly. Talk to you soon.

Rick Salaices


10/4/2012 from: Schmiechen, Kathie, ACFD
Sent: Monday, October 01, 2012 3:55 PM

Maximilian Orion Poveda Schmiechen
4 pounds, 3 oz; 17.3"
Hugo Fernando Poveda Schmiechen
4 pounds, 9 oz; 18"

Doing well in NICU. (premature at 34 weeks, 2 days) They will stay in NICU for 2-4 more weeks.
mom- pre- eclampsia, emergency c section, should be released tomorrow.

We are head over heels in love with these kids!

10/3/2012 from Ryan Nishimoto:

Hi Rich,

I have another attachment that can be posted in the Bresnan Distributor if you wish. It's regarding supplemental medicare rates. Lorelei Wade was nice enough to send me a copy. It may help someone turning the age of 65 figure out some of the cost differences that will occur with their healthcare premiums. Medicare seems to be universally confusing. Many factors are involved with the calculation. Unfortunately, our M.O.U. states that the Supplemental Managed Medicare Rate at the Kaiser Northern California rate will be covered once you and/or your spouse turn 65, but it doesn't address the medicare rates that follow once you and/or your spouse turn 65. This increased costs for many, depending on what healthcare plan they chose, can be very confusing. I am always available should any have any questions.

Thank You,

Ryan Nishimoto

ACFFA IAFF Local #55 - Advisory Committee Chairperson




10/3/2012 from Fred Biscotti:

My house is getting small, plus the worst part is I am getting older, so there only 1 way I can change part of that, I understand that alameda county fire has a museum in san leandro where chief jansen donated some model fire engines and autos, I am retired from castro valley fire and I made all the vehicles he donated.

at the present tine I still have some models left , like 2 of the original 1913 sea graves and a other one. there is a city service truck better known as a hook and ladder truck, a fifth wheel aerial ladder with a tiller seat, and if I spell it right a aherons fox,a hose cart, fire hydrant back pack pump, little odds and ends, I really don't have anyone in our family who would appreciate them, the present time thy are around 26 six years old, they were built by me Fred biscotti & Danny ferias of castro valley. so what I am getting at is would the museum like to have them, all I ask is to have a picture or two of all the things we made.

if you would like them contact me Fred biscotti there is lots of love sweat and blood in them and i really like them to be with rest of the family my phone is 530-258-3505 or the cell 530-258 THANKS

10/3/2012 from Kay Dana:

Interesting idea – probably lots of guys on ACFD that would love this duty. KAD


9/13/2012 from Ray Nishimoto:

Hi Rich,

I wanted to pass along some medicare related info to be posted in the Bresnan.

Attached is the latest Medicare rates. Please contact me if you have any questions. Remember that if you were hired in 1986 or after, you must apply for medicare at age 65. It is recommended to apply for medicare approx. 3 months before your 65th birthday at the nearest social security office or by phone. I also recommend contacting BCN for assistance at 1-800-87-1088.

Take Care,

Ryan Nishimoto

ACFFA IAFF Local #55 - Advisory Committee Chairperson



Benefits Communication Network

(800) 876- 1088



The letter CalPERS sends regarding Medicare can be very confusing. They send this letter immediately upon anyone retiring regardless of age and then again when the member is going to turn age 65. When a member qualifies for Part A of Medicare (this means it is provided at no cost) then they are Medicare qualified.


Medicare Part A helps cover inpatient care in hospitals, critical access hospitals and skilled nursing facilities. It also covers hospice care and some home health care.


Medicare Part B helps cover doctors' services, outpatient hospital care, and some other medical services that Medicare Part A doesn't cover, such as some of the services of physical and occupational therapists, and some home health care. Medicare Part B helps pay for these covered services and supplies when they are medically necessary.


If you are eligible for Medicare Part A, you are also eligible for Medicare Part B. If you qualify for premium-free Part A - either in your own right or through a current, former, or deceased spouse you must enroll in Part B at age 65 (or earlier if you qualify due to a disability) to continue your group coverage through CaIPERS.


Anyone who is a citizen after age 65 can sign up for Medicare but if they are not qualified then they would have to pay for Part A.


This is an interesting fact I found on the "CaIPERS Website."

If you are a State of California retiree and you or your family members are enrolled in a CalPERS Medicare health plan, California law requires CalPERS to reimburse you for a portion of your Medicare Part B premium.


A member will pay the following for Part B if their income is:

Filing Single Filing Joint

$85,000 or below               $170,000 or below             $99.90 *

$85,001-$107,000              $170,001-$214,000            $139.90 *

$107,001-$160,000            $214,001-$320,000            $199.80 *

$160,001- $214,000           $320,001- $428,000           $259.70 *

above $214,000                  above $428,000                  $319.70 *


Bottom Line:

If a member is not Medicare qualified - either in their own right or through a current, former, or deceased spouse - they should NOT sign up for Medicare at age 65. The member should maintain their pre age 65 CalPERS Basic Health Plan.


Members hired after 1986 will be qualified for Medicare and MUST sign up for Medicare upon reaching age 65.

Please call me if you have any questions or would like me to meet with a group of retirees.



9/13/2012 from Fred Little:

Hey Guy's,

Yes I do have a new established retirement address

Fred & Jean Little

Everything went well with the move in July, all unpacked, vehicles and license complete and registered to vote as Coloradans.

This year our taxes to the State of Colorado is like everyone else who lives here, a flat tax of 4.3% but since Jean and I are over 55 and are both on retirement annuities, we both have a $20,000 subtraction each (40k) off our total income before they figure out the state income tax owed. When we turn 65 we can subtract an additional $5k off or $50k off every year. Everything here is less, gas, food, you name it. No smog check, registration for all our vehicles was less than my truck in Calif. We can carry a loaded gun in our vehicles and no one cares or bats an eye, it's legal here, hell they expect it as your civic duty, everyone is polite to each other here.

The best thing we enjoy is every day on the local music radio stations at high noon, they play the National Anthem, both verses. This is an all American type city here in Colorado Springs. But best of all, Jean loves her new home and the area as do I.

Today it’s raining for the first time since we arrived. The week calls for good weather after today.

Hope everyone is safe and healthy, if your ever in Springs, give us a call, we have plenty of room for your visit, six bedrooms. Of course like fish in the refer, after three days we usually toss it. LoL...

Bye for now. Fred


8/27/2012 from Lennie Orr:

Anyone know an ex firefighter David Brooker with the old Fire Patrol? The guy listed below is trying to reach his wife.

Lennie Orr

Subject: David Brooker


Lisa Lopez My name is Mike Brooker. Iam looking for information about my 1st cousin David Brooker. He passed away in 1971 according to his obit. He worked as a fireman with the Alameda fire dept.@1617 College Ave. Livermore. I know it has been a long time and I might be out of luck finding any body that worked with him. I know he was married and had a wife. Her name is Charlene M, and I would imagine she has remarried. I would just like to touch base with her to see if she is OK. I was at their Wedding in 1967. I was in the Marine Corps and he was in the Air Force. If you have any info I would appreciate it. Gratefully Yours MIKE BROOKER My E-Mail address is


8/4/2012 from Blake O’Hara:

Alameda County Firefighters Association

Ninth Annual

ACFD Retirement Party


Come and celebrate the past careers and future retirements of our fellow firefighter family. This will be an evening of fun, food, drink, and camaraderie. Visit with old friends and listen to a few tall tales. Everyone is welcome!!



October 13, 2012

5:30 – 7:00 PM Cocktails

7:00 – 8:00 PM Buffet Dinner

8:00 PM – Midnight Roast


IBEW Local 595 Hall 6250 Village Parkway, Dublin, CA 94568

Casual Dress. Discount room rates are available at:

Extended Stay America, 4500 Dublin Boulevard, Dublin, CA.

Call: (925) 875-9556 for prices.



The Retirement Party is intended for all ACFD members, both active and retired. Please make an effort to attend this event and show your support for those who have dedicated so much of their lives to the fire service. Donations at the door will be accepted.


RSVP: Phone Station #13 - any shift - (510) 357-2645


7/11/2012 from Norm Silva:

I am sad to report that my wife of 63 years passed away on june13 2012.
Many of the retired firemen from Castro Valley will remember her
Thanks for keeping us up on the news.

NORM SILVA retired battalion chief.


Lorraine May Silva


Lorraine passed away peacefully on June 13, 2012 at the age of 84, after a long illness. She was the beloved wife of Norman Silva for the past 63 years, and mother to Bonnie King of Danville. Lorraine is survived by her brother, Walter Young of Danville and his wife Marian, and many loving nieces and nephews.


Lorraine was born in San Francisco and raised in Oakland. Her family moved to Hayward in 1945, where she attended Hayward High School, graduating in 1946. Lorraine was a noted floral designer for 35 years, and created her art at LyalNickals in San Leandro. Lorraine enjoyed oil painting, playing the piano, and was famous for the incredible meals she prepared for family and friends. The breakfasts she prepared at her Tahoe home were legendary.

7/3/2012 from Jody Naas:

Hi Rich,

Just got back from Durango, CO after helping John Camacho move there. We stopped at 4 corners(pic) along the way. We drove a LARGE U-Haul truck from Pleasanton to Durango in about 18 hrs. It took us another 3 hrs. to unload it in John's new garage(pic). With the whole state of Colorado being on fire right now, John feels right at home on his deck doing `fire watch' just like when he was on the Fed Incident Command Team.(pic).


Jody Naas



From: Rocha, David, ACFD
Sent: Saturday, June 23, 2012 5:24 PM
Subject: Visiting Hollis


While visiting with Hollis, Mary requested that people no longer call Hollis' cellular telephone before visiting.


Hollis and the family appreciate all the visitors. Hollis' condition is deteriorating quickly. He may be resting and unable to actively visit, but just being in his presence is respectful and an honor.


I hope you have the opportunity to visit with Hollis and his family at 4026 Hillcrest Common in Livermore.


If you drop by and it's not a good time, the family or a care giver may ask you to return at another time. Please be understanding.


David Rocha, Deputy Fire Chief

Alameda County Fire Department



From: Sheehan, Brian, ACFD
Sent: Friday, June 22, 2012 10:52 AM
Subject: Hollis Franks Condition update... Urgent!!!!

To All,

It is with mixed emotions that I send out this e-mail. Our friend, Our Brother, Fire Fighter Hollis Franks has come back home... Simon Andrade, Dave Rivers, Mike Moyles, and Art Garcia went down to San Diego yesterday and picked him up in an RV and brought him home this morning. Hollis's condition has greatly deteriorated and he has only been given a short time to live by his doctors. The cancer has come back and is spread throughout his lungs. This is causing Hollis to have a hard time talking more then a couple word sentences. He was very tired when we saw him, but was very happy to see his friends. Hollis's last wish was to come back home and be with his friends and family if the cancer treatment did not work. It was very hard for me to see Hollis in his new condition, but to see him and be able to share some words was priceless for me. Hollis wants to see all of his friends to say his final good byes. Please give him a call, and try to schedule some time to go and see him. He really appreciates seeing all of his friends and family. Time is of the essence, so please do not delay. I did not want to give out his address, because I'm sure the family would like a little heads up before stopping by. They understand that a lot of people want to come see Hollis, so their home is open for anyone that would like to go spend some time with him. His cell number is (925)216-9640. Hollis is not really eating any food anymore, but the family could always use some help with meals. Tonight, Sta#8 B-Shift is going to bring them dinner, but anyone that wants to cook a meal for the family would be a great help. Sorry for the bad news, but I wanted everyone to be aware of Hollis's condition and to give everyone the opportunity to go see him. So please go see our buddy, friend, most senior FF in our department and give Hollis his final wish, to see, and say goodbye to all of his friends. I'm sure glad I got a chance to sit down and talk with my good old buddy. Take care and please give me a call if you have any questions (925)895-3759.


Captain B. Sheehan

Station 8 on the B-Shift


6/11/2012 from John Torres

Subject: Pauly sta #23


It is with a heavy heart that I inform the ACFD family that our beloved Paul Harris (Pauly) has passed away. Many of you know who he was. He was a fixture on Saturdays and Sundays at the Carnival in Cherryland (sta.#23) for over 25 years.


Paul was mentally slow, but loved the ACFD, and we loved him back. He turned 76 in Feb. of this year. He had been living at Mrs. Elizabeth’s care home on Cherry way for over 36 years. It started out when Pauly use to stand out side the station crying, saying someone hit him. He just wanted to come in and see “the old firetruck”. It grew to every Saturday and Sunday we would feed him and let him hang out all day.


It may be hard to understand, but this is a great loss to Cherryland, to Sta.#23, and to our department. Please keep him in your prayers, Pauly was a good man. Thanks for reading.




Capt. John Torres

Alameda County F.D.

Cherryland Sta. #23

'A' shift



6/8/2012 from Joe Ferreira:

 Hello Rich,

First off I want to say thank you for all that you continue to do. I've been remiss in that I haven't sent you any money for quite some time so here is a check.

My wife Ellen and I are living in Sun City Roseville and have been here for just over two and a half years and we love the place. Ellen is still working so I find myself staying busy walking, riding bikes, kayaking, and playing Bocci Ball. I even won a tournament a couple of months back. Ellen and I also love to travel and do so whenever we can.

Say hello to all the guys for me if you happen to see them. I hope all is well with you,

Joe Ferreira


PS Please feel free to share this in the Bresnan

6/5/2012 from Rod Mendes:

What a wonderful surprise to see the pictures of all those familiar and smiling faces. Its a blessing to be part of so much history in the fire service. When I turned 60 last November, I was thinking that maybe I should retire. But my job is my passion. I wouldnt trade the last 43 years in emergency services for anything. I dont intend on retiring in the near future. I am heavily involved in training and working on a few national issues with DHS and FEMA as well as NWCG. I want to make sure we do as much as possible to protect our most valuable asset. Our Fire fighters, our first responders. As I look back on the dozens and dozens of fallen brothers and sisters that I have personally known, and the hundreds of those still with us. I remember all the great deeds, the dedication, the sacrifices that we have all made by coming together, and continuing to make that contact with each other. It sends a statement to those that will walk behind us and step in our shoes. This profession is a passionate profession that never dies, no matter how old we get. Thank you retirees for giving so much, I remember.

Rod Mendes


6/5/2012: This is the first I have heard about Bob Strickell passing:..FERG<><


STRICKELL, Bob, of Castro Valley, passed away on Thursday, May 24, 2012 at age 68. Mr. Strickell was a 1961 graduate of Castro Valley High School and proudly served in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War. He worked as a Fire Fighter Engineer in Castro Valley for 24 years before retiring. Memorial services will be held at noon Thursday, May 31, at Jess C. Spencer Mortuary, 21228 Redwood Road in Castro Valley.


Bob Strickell
July 15, 1943-May 24, 2012
Resident of Castro Valley
Bob passed away peacefully with his family by his side on May 24, 2012. He is survived by his wife of 18 years Sandy, 2 sons Bob Ron, 2 step-children Bart Chris, 12 grandchildren. He was a 1961 graduate of Castro Valley High School proudly served in the U.S. Army during the Vietnam War. Bob worked as a Fire Fighter Engineer in Castro Valley for 24 years before retiring. He was a true NASCAR fan.


6/5/2012 from Bill Potts:


Sorry I can't be there for Thad's retirement. Also sorry to hear about passing of Bob Strickell.

I am 26 days into my bicycle ride from Yorktown, Virginia to Glenwood Springs, Colorado. This has been a really great adventure so far. The people of Va., Ky., Ill., and Missouri have treated me very well. The drivers have been very courteous. I have so many stories and interesting people I have met. I have ridden about 1300 miles so far and most of it has been challenging due to the topography of the states I am in. I am currently staying in an old jail that was converted to a cyclist hostel in Farmington, Missouri. This is the nicest town I have visited in a few weeks. I have primarily been riding on secondary roads to reduce conflicts with cars and trucks. I am following the bicycle route that was mapped out in 1976 to celebrate the bicentennial by Adventure Cycling, inc.

I am traveling alone and carrying everything I need. I camp about a third of the time, stay at churches or hostels about a third and stay in motels or B&B's the rest of the time. I have met some other riders along the way from all over the world and have ridden with some of them for a few days. Tonight I am sharing this hostel with Don and Dotti from upstate NY, they are recently retired and riding from Va. to Oregon. If I continued on the trail I am on (TransAm), I would end up in Astoria, Oregon. I have a few commitments that require me to be home by July 6th., so I will not get to complete the trip to Oregon this time. I intend to ride from Colorado to Oregon next year with one of my sons.

I have been posting daily on Facebook, so if people want to follow me on Facebook they can. I have quite a few people from ACFD following me.

On the road for 26 more days,

Bill Potts


5/23/2012 from Darryl Karg:


In April, Sue and I went on a cruise to Hawaii with Dave and Bev Cameron and eight of our friends. After signing up, we discovered that Mike and Priscilla Fitzgerald had also signed up. On the second day out at sea, Mike ran into Bill and Donna Caplinger. Bill and Donna both looked great. They were celebrating their 61st anniversary, so we didn't see them very often. Bill finally retired from coaching girl's golf at Castro Valley High, but he still plays golf etc.

It was a great trip, we had lots of fun and met lots of nice people. Seeing Bill and Donna doing so well was really the icing on the cake. For those of you that never worked with Bill, he was one of those Engineers all engineers should aspire to be. Seeing Bill really made me nostalgic for the "good old days". I am so fortunate to have had such a great job and worked with so many great people.

I have enclosed a photo of the four of us. One curious thing about the photo. I am 5'10" tall, Dave Cameron claims to be 5'11". In the picture I am clearly at least 4" taller than Dave. I don't know where Dave comes up with 5'11". Personally I think he should be greeting visitors to Fantasy Island.

Great job on the Bresnan Rich! Sue and I both look forward to receiving it each month.


5/22/2012 from Sheldon Gilbert:

Dear Friends and Colleagues,


It is with mixed emotions that I write this letter to inform you I have made the difficult decision to leave the Alameda County Fire Department effective July 31, 2012. Needless to say, after 27 years in the fire service and 29 years in Alameda County as a public safety responder, this decision was not an easy one. I am extremely grateful for the opportunity I have had to work with you during my career as an emergency responder and/or administrator.


The decision to leave is mine based on my feelings that, with the accomplishments that have been achieved thus far, the Alameda County Fire Department is in a good place for a seamless and positive transition.


Being born and raised in Alameda County, it has been an honor to serve Alameda County in many emergency responding capacities from an Emergency Medical Technician, Paramedic and Firefighter, Fire Engineer, Emergency Medical Services Director, Assistant Chief, Deputy Fire Chief, culminating with the distinguished privilege of serving as the Alameda County Fire Chief.


I feel honored to have worked with you in and truly believe that this experience will make me a better professional in my future endeavors.


Again, I want to thank you for the opportunity to work with you.


I look forward to what the future holds for the ACFD and Alameda County as a whole.




Sheldon D. Gilbert

Fire Chief


5/4/2012 from Jeremy Roderick:

Subject: Tom Hathcox


I was asked to pass on some information regarding an update on Tom Hathcox.  He has entered Hospice and is now accepting visitors. I am unsure of the nature of the illness that caused the Hospice, but was asked by Karen Decou to share this with you all.


His information is below:


Tom Hathcox

670 Starling Ave

Livermore, CA 94550




Thank you. Jeremy.

5/2/2012 Hollis Franks info:


On Apr 20, 2012, at 12:21 AM, "Andrade, Simon, ACFD" <> wrote:


To All:


   I thought I would  take some time to talk with you all about  brother Franks. Hollis recently went in for his latest full body scan and got some bad news. The cancer that had been in his lungs has spread to his spine and his pelvis. Hollis is trying to keep his spirits up and remain positive, but to use words that Hollis would understand cancers got the high ground. We all know what cancer can do to a person, and that the fight just got worse for Hollis. Brother Franks is in need of re-enforcements  to get thru this fight, so I’m asking all of you to keep him in your prayers and to offer help as he may need it. Hollis has been excepted into a new experimental cancer treatment that only 227 cancer patients in the whole world are participating in . Hollis is hanging all his hopes on this new treatment and feels that the medical staff is doing all they can to beat back his cancer. Because this is a new treatment it will be well documented and the full body scans will be more frequent, which means we will know sooner than later if the treatment is working. I will keep you all informed as best I can, thank you all for your love and support.


Respectfully         Simon Andrade station 8



From: Foster, Jamie, ACFD

Subject: Re: Hollis Franks


Captain Andrade,

What heartbreaking news.

Is there a good place for us to send cards and letters of encouragement and support to Hollis and Mary?

Sometimes if you can't attack from front, you try a different approach. What a true firefighter Hollis is!

With Respect,


Jamie Foster 12/B



From: Schmiechen, Kathie, ACFD

Sent: Wednesday, April 25, 2012 3:24 PM

Subject: RE: Hollis Franks


Hi Simon,


I talked to Hollis today and he sounded good. Here is his address in case anyone wants to send a note or card:


Hollis Franks

8310 Pine Court

La Mesa, CA 91942




To pass on to the department—


Hollis’s situation is a pretty amazing one. Of all the oncology patients in the world today, he has been chosen to participate in a study involving experimental treatment. At age 66, his doctor (one of the top ten oncologists in the country) chose Hollis based on how well he has taken care of himself and on his positive attitude. There are only 5 patients at his hospital, Loma Linda, going through this program. His doctor is super aggressive and is opening doors for Hollis left and right- he was admitted to the program with 24 hours of getting the results of his recent body scan. The treatments involves antibodies created to attack the specific cancer cells he has. There is a 75% chance that Hollis will receive this experimental drug instead of a placebo, but if he does get the placebo, he will still also get standard cancer drugs. His treatments will start Friday and will last 8-16 weeks, with an infusion every other week.  Due to this two week cycle, he’ll be spending a little less time in Livermore in between treatments.


Hollis says he is breathing well, even going to the gym a bit, but he also has periods of back pain and low energy levels. He is very pleased with his doctor and sounds like he’s in pretty good spirits. He is happy to get phone calls from coworkers, so please don’t hesitate to give him a ring. Actually when I called, I got voice mail and didn’t want to bother him with a message. Within a minute, he called me back, saying, did someone from this number call me?   What a guy.


Thanks for sharing this-


Kathie Schmiechen   Engineer, 7/C

4/16/2012 from Frank Sturgeon:


I know you have been waiting by your mail box for this note.  Well here it is, we moved again.  We are back where we first retired to, Sun City Summerlin Las Vegas.

Arline and I are both doing fine.

Thanks again for the Bresnan.


4/3/2012 from Sue Beville:



This year’s ACFD Retiree Luncheon will be held on Monday, May 21, 2012 (11:30 am – 2:30 pm), at Fire Station #10 (2194 Williams Street, San Leandro).

Will you please post/distribute this information? I will have a flyer within the next 2 weeks. Thank you and hope all is well.


Sue Beville

Alameda County Fire Department



3/29/2012 from John and Lynn Robarge:

Just a quick note to let all know that Donald Robarge has reached 95 years old. He now lives in an Assisted Care facility in Fremont. Don retired in 1982 as an assistant chief. Began his career in San Lorenzo as a volunteer.

3/28/2012 from Lennie Orr:

I would like to thank all retirees for the opportunity to represent you at the Alameda County Firefighters Executive Board. Due to my teaching commitments I cannot make many of the meetings scheduled this year. The local would like to see if there is a retiree interested in taking my spot on the Board. There is a monthly meeting each month on the first Monday. It is a non-voting seat on the board. We are there to represent retirees and give a historical prospective. We are also a point of contact for retirees asking questions concerning benefits and PERS. This is a very important position and as future negotiations occur could become even more important to future and current retirees. If you are interest you can contact If you have questions for me you can contact


Thank You

Lennie Orr


3/3/2012 from Jeremy Roderick:


Saint Patrick’s Day Annual Pancake Breakfast Saturday March 17th at FS 16 on Donahue in Dublin



From: Carrizalez, Armigh, ACFD
Posted At: Tuesday, March 13, 2012 5:11 PM
Posted To: Non-Official Business
Conversation: St. Patrick's Day T -Shirt
Subject: St. Patrick's Day T -Shirt


Allan Horton has designed this year’s St. Paddy’s day shirt once again.

They are 15 dollars each and come in forest green or black, (short sleeve only) we do have a few youth sizes also.

We will be selling them on Saturday at the St. Patrick ’s Day Pancake Breakfast at station 16 in Dublin

If you would like to buy one now I will have them here at Station 25, just send me an email or call along with cash or a check made out to ACFFA and I will send you your T-Shirt.



Armigh Carrizalez Station 25C


PS the front says “Pure Malt Pancakes”


2/24/2012 I just got this from Dino:


Zoggas, Dino, ACFD


From: Nishimoto, Ryan, ACFD

Just an update. Brother Ed DeCou and his wife, Karen, greatly express their gratitude for the donations from the ACFFA family. Over $4000 has been donated. The retaining wall in the backyard has been repaired and home health-care has been initiated. John and myself will continue to collect donations. Ed is really enjoying the visits as well, so please don't hesitate to drop by and talk about the good 'ole days.

Thank you everyone for supporting Ed and Karen throughout this tough time!


From: Nishimoto, Ryan, ACFD

Posted At: Friday, January 20, 2012 11:03 PM Posted To: Non-Official Business

Conversation: Bro. Ed DeCou Update/Assistance Subject: Bro. Ed DeCou Update/Assistance

We have a retiree in need of assistance. Retired Engineer Ed DeCou is battling a serious disease called Multiple Systems Atrophy. It is related to Parkinson's Disease, but is much faster in progression and does not respond well to medications. In the matter of six month, Ed's health has deteriorated to the point where he can no longer be left alone because of the daily activities that we easily take for granted have become too difficult for him.

Ed fortunately has Long Term Care, but as part of the insurance contract, you must pay for the first 60 shifts (4 hour shifts) out-of-pocket before the benefit assists with payments. With this initial cost and a retaining wall in the backyard in need of serious repair, Ed's wife, Karen has actively been searching all avenues for assistance. The backyard retaining wall is beyond a "work party" fix that volunteers can do. It will cost a professional approximately $6200.

If you would like to donate monetarily to the DeCou family, Brother John McClintic (Station 25A) and myself will be collecting and delivering the donations. Please send checks and not cash if possible. Karen also stated that another need is visitation from fellow brothers and sisters from ACFD. If you have the time, set up a lunch date with Brother Ed. Please contact John or myself for further.

2/21/2012 Info on Tom Godbier:

As many of your know, retired engineer and SCBA guru Tom Godbier has been battling cancer for many months now.

He is currently at home and being cared for by his loving wife and family, along with support from hospice. His battle continues, but unfortunately Tom will not be returning to do the job he’s loved since 1962.

Tom’s family wanted me to pass on word of his condition. He is unable to speak due to the cancer, is struggling with the pain, and is not up to any visitors at the moment.

If anyone wishes to send Tom an E-mail, his address is: GODBIER@SBCGLOBAL.NET

If your old fashion like me, and would rather send a card to him in the real mail, his address is:


Tom Godbier

1189 Louise

San Leandro, Ca 94578




John Hartmann

2/14/2012 from Gary Henthorn:

Hi Rich,

Henthorn here, yep I’m still kickin’.  Still riding dirt bikes.  Off this weekend for 3 days of camping in the dirt.  Seems as though all the guys I ride with now are under 40.  The guys my age have slowly stopped riding.  I still camp as often as possible.  I have a group of about 20 that go with me! + kids.

Hope you’re enjoying retirement as much as I am.  I’m also watching 1-3 grandchildren 4 days a week.

Now that I turned 65….My income dropped.  It costs about $300 for Medicare, even though the department saves $400 as the health insurance premiums go down for anyone 65 or over.  And your coverage also changes. 

Best Wishes Gary

PS: Here’s a donation and thanks for your efforts/work on the Bresnan. Thanks.

2/3/2012 from John Torres:

To the ACFFA family,

It is with great pride I share the results of the Presidential Runoff. It was a well run race, honor and dignity throughout. Passion was displayed by both members, and a willingness to throw themselves on the grenade. Brother Ismail  160  55% - Brother Anderson  131  45% - Abstain (why???)  1

Total votes 292  83% of membership

Please join with me in congratulating Brother Ramsey Ismail as the new President of the ACFFA Local 55. Good luck Brother, and may ALL your decisions be wise, your council be strong, and your leadership be courageous.

I will be working with Brother Ismail for the next 2 months transitioning the office to him. He will officially take over April 1st.

Thank you all for your great support over the past 4 years. Oddly enough, I have found it harder to step away from this seat than I did stepping in to it. I truly had an awesome experience. I poured every part of me into the seat, thank you for the opportunity to represent you all. Luv ya.......


President (not for long)



2/1/2012 from Rod Mendes:

Hi Rich

Attached is a picture of me and Luster Knight around 1980 or so, on company inspections in the old SLFD Station 5 Fargo district. Always smiling and joking around. Luster and I had a lot of fun on and off duty. I miss him a bunch. He made the best deep fried chicken and corn bread. That man knew how to cook a good meal.

Rod Mendes


1/12/2012 from Terry Givens:


Here is a check for the Bresnan Distributor.  I look forward to every month to read about the guys in the fire dept.

Some of the names go way back to when we all volunteered for the Office of Emergency Services (O.E.S.).

Again thanks for allowing me to be a part of this

Terry Givens 197302004

12/26/2011 from Frank Sturgeon:

Hi Rich,

Thank you for mailing us the Bresnan News.  It’s tough on us since we did not keep up with the computer age (too lazy).  If need be, our grandchild helps us.   Thank you for all the nice news and the sad ones too.  It’s our way of being part of ACFD.

Happy New Year to everyone who still remembers us.

Frank Sturgeon

11/30/2011 from Tom Boggs:


 Just read the latest issue of the Bresnan. Thanks for your dedication to this forum.

 As to your upcoming membership in Medicare, WELCOME. As an old guy, I went into that system last year kicking and screaming.

 Like you, I had a small Social Security pension. This was not earned through any fire service work. I also did not have the full quarters, so get a reduced amount each month. Then Medicare came into the fray, and took a large chunk from my SS.

 I do hope that in the future, those of us who worked for our future can get the full amount we have earned. Because of the PERS retirement, my SS was reduced, then reduced further with Medicare. Contrast that with our politicians getting full medical and retirement pay even with a minimum of years service when elected to office.

 Hope it all works out for you. Please keep me posted on this issue.

All the best, and Merry Christmas,

Tom Boggs

11/4/2011 from Mike Bennardo:

Dear Rich:

First I want to thank you for all the work you do and have done for the Bresnan in particular, and for retirees in general.

I was one of the disappointedly smaller than expected group of us at the retirees’ awards and dinner in Dublin last Saturday night, and, besides notice taken of more we have to do to keep events like that more popular, two other things came to my notice.

The first, but not most important, is asking if there may be a place on the Bresnan for retirees with motorcycles to post or announce upcoming rides or events which other bikers may be of interest. Please get back to me on that.

The second is much more important. We retirees have to start attending Union Meetings. I would like to see us get our vote back, but that is down the line somewhere. As you and all retirees know, health costs are skyrocketing. We need to be represented, and to begin the campaign, asking for online personnel to pick up any new increase in cost which will occur to retiree’s medical. I thought we would be covered for life, but, as McKenna and Rocha explained to me at Stacy Hartmann’s Memorial, nothing is etched in stone. And if the County does not have the money to pay for the Medical Insurance Premiums for an ever increasing number of retirees, then, we will have to pay it ourselves.

It only makes sense to have online personnel pick up the difference, and continue to perpetuity, that one day, the same will be done for them. However, that attitude may not be shared with young twenty-something new hires who were never nailing union signs to posts in the back of Rich Ferguson’s garage. I feel it is safe to say that less than 10% of online personnel at ACFD have ever read an MOU, let alone the current one....and of that 10%, probably less than half of them know what last/best offer means. My point is, we need to get more retirees involved in the union, or at least go to the meetings. Can we use the Bresnan as a resource to that end?

Your thoughts and replies will be more than appreciated.

Fraternally yours,

Mike B.


10/31/2011 from Ryan Nishimoto:

Hi Rich,

Francis Chew passed along some very helpful website links at the Retirees' Dinner the other night. They are as follows if you would like to add them to the Bresnan Distributor Page and/or mailer.


Take Care,

Ryan Nishimoto

ACFFA IAFF Local #55 - Advisory Committee Chairperson


10/30/2011, from Carter, Mark, ACFD:
Subject: SL Seniors' Thanksgiving Luncheon


It is that time of year again to get ready to participate in the 34th Annual Seniors’ Thanksgiving Luncheon in San Leandro. The event will be held on Wednesday the 23rd of November at the Marina Community Center. This is located at 15301 Wicks Blvd. in Dist.# 11. As usual we will arrive at 0830 hrs. and help set up, then go have breakfast and return for 1115 hrs. to get ready to serve. Please send me an e-mail to let me know if you are coming so I can keep the SL Senior Services department up to date, on how many people we will have to help out. Dress code: blue jeans and blue department or union T-shirt.


History of event:


This event has been going on for many years now, long before my time in the department. It started with the San Leandro Firefighter’s Assn. actually making the full meal and serving it. Over the years, responsibilities have changed, however now through consolidation this event is supported both by the ACFD and Local 55. No more cooking, just set up and serve, and the City will clean everything up. This has been a great event to be apart of and will always require your support. I hope you will join me in helping to serve our Senior community this Thanksgiving Season. Let me know if you can help. Thanks!




Mark S. Carter


Alameda County Fire

St.# 12-C

(510) 618-3472

10/25/2011 from Linney, Gary J., ACFD:
Subject: Dillon's heading for the dugout


Please join us one and all on Saturday, November 5, 2011 at station 17 from 1300-1700 hours as we will be celebrating the ultimate shift in Captain Tim Dillon’s illustrious firefighting career which began in 1983. It is a complete game performance with no relief from the bull…pen. We will nosh on hors d’oeuvres and cake as we implore Tim to share epic tales of slaying the dragon. You may even want to dig deep for some stories of your own to share. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to tip your cap to Tim as he walks off the mound, don’t miss it.


Congratulations Tim!


Gary Linney Battalion Chief Alameda County Fire Department Station 20/A

office 925-423-1810 cell 925-596-1812 fax 925-422-0523

10/21/2011 from Jeremy Roderick:

I am happy pass on to the ACFD Family the new arrival to the Montes Family; baby girl born last night at 2221 hrs. :

Alyssa Montes

5 lbs. 13 oz.


All are healthy!!



Jeff Kramm

10/13/2011 from Joe Banchero:

Hi Rich,
Here are a couple of pictures from big island, we are here with Jerry and Linda Skaggs. We also hooked up
with Jim Martinez. We all helped out with the Ironman World Champions.

10/6/2011 from Stephanie Radecke:

All Personnel-


I spoke to Hollis this morning.

He is in good spirits and getting ready for his second Chemo treatment at the Loma Linda Cancer Center on Monday.

Hollis will find out next week if he is a candidate for Proton therapy.

Hollis stated that his doctor indicated that Chemotherapy alone is rarely effective for his type of Stage 4 Lung cancer.

He is hoping for the best but also realizes that there is no magic bullet for this type of cancer.

Hollis is still going to the gym every day and he plans on flying up next week in between his treatments to visit his son here in Livermore.

Hollis appreciates everyone’s thoughts and prayers and he will let us know if he needs assistance getting to and from the airport next week.

Simon Andrade has established a list of members in Livermore who would be willing to help Hollis and his wife Mary.

Please contact Simon if you are available to assist in any way.

Thank you.




Stephanie Radecke

Station 8A


9/26/2011 from Bill Robertson:

Rich. Thanks so much for your notifying me of happenings in the department. Was very happy to hear of the memorial for Luster. I was in the process of retiring when he came into the department and seemed then to be a good candidate for the fire service. So sorry that he passed away, but glad to hear that he was being recognized for his service.

I don't know if many know it or not, but I have been recognized for my military service by being given an all-expense paid trip back to Washington DC to see the WWII memorial that is now complete. It was a whirlwind trip, but well worth it. I served in both WWII and was also recalled from the fire department and served another year in Korea. Got to be with 99 other veterans viewing the memorials in DC and one of them was a fellow school mate that I hadn’t seen since 1984. Small word we live in. Also saw Arlington Cemetery with over 350,000 graves. Too bad that war takes so many people. The price we pay and that so few remember. FREEDOM IS NOT FREE.

Also spoke with Hal Ryder the other day and he is not too well. Many don't realize that he is the instigator who started the Retirees Breakfast (which is now a luncheon).  That was a long time ago.

Things keep going along though. I have passed my 86th birthday now and though the aging process goes on, I still feel OK and my wife of 62 years is still carrying on with her Alzheimers. I do see her at least 5 to 6 times a week, but there is no recognition of who I am.

Rambled on enough for now. Take care and say hello to all who remember me. Fraternally, Bill Robertson

P.S. been retired for 33 years now, so there is hope for all that it can work.

9/26/2011 from Rod Mendes:

Hi Richard

I just got finished going back and re-reading most of the past letters and the new ones as well. I am so amazed and just plain happy of how all our brothers and sisters continue to stay in touch and make sure that our relationships are maintained. This is my 42nd year in emergency services, and when i read those letters and see the pictures of those that we have walked through smoke with, I am over whelmed with emotion. I say brothers and sisters, because as we all know that the connection we made is not a passing thought, or a moment in time, its permanent. When I read the stories and see the pictures of folks I know. It’s hard to imagine that when we were all younger, someday we would be the "Old Guys". But a career in the fire service and then retiring is like standing in line for a ride at Disneyland, with one exception. Everyone gets a turn, but only one turn per customer. I wanted to tell everyone (including their families) that I know and knows me. I appreciate everything you have done, the sacrifices you have made, and the love you have shared. We may not see each other everyday or ever again, but the bottom line for me is, all of you are forever in my memories and your buried deep in my heart. That’s just the way it is.


Keep pulling hose.


Rod Mendes



Subject: FW: Knight Memorial Dedication


Thank you so much for your quick responses. The Knight Memorial Dedication is Saturday, September 24, 12-12:30 p.m. at Marina Park. The location of the Memorial is outlined on the flyer. For the Dedication ceremony, I would like one member of each group to share what made Luster special to your group. If anyone would like to meet next week to help outline the ceremony, please let me know. Or, you can let me know your thoughts via email.

Attached is the flyer for the Dedication. Please distribute these to the members of your agency. If you would like hard copies and do not have access to a printer, please let me know how many to make for you and you can pick them up in our South Offices location.

If you haven’t been by and you have a minute, go and see it, it’s really special.

Thanks to all of you for your hard work and patience in making this happen.

Carolyn Knudtson

Recreation and Human Services Director

835 East 14th Street

San Leandro, CA. 94577


510-577-3470 Fax

Check out our website at


8/29/2011 from Jeremy Roderick:

Save the Date .. Saturday October 29th will be the “Annual Retiree’s Dinner” hosted at the ACFFA/IBEW Union Hall in Dublin. I will send out flyers as soon as I get one.

There will be a shuttle to drive you to a local hotel. Book your rooms now !!!!!



Alameda County Fire

Captain Jeremy Roderick

Engine 10, C Platoon

Station # (510) 618-3470



8/26/2011 from Rich Milan:

Hi All:


Vince Davis sent a text to me and I just spoke to Steve Gross. For those of you who know Steve Gross, I just found out he fell off his MB coming down the Flume trail in Tahoe on July 19th. He fractured his pelvis in two places and cracked a couple of ribs. Hour and a half to get him out. No surgery but he can't do anything for 8 to 12 weeks (it's been four weeks now?).


So watch yourself on those bicycles! Go parachuting, motorcycle racing, big wave surfing, hang gliding, free climbing up El Capitan, or hike up Mt. Everest, but BE CAREFUL ON THOSE BIKES!


Tommy, stick to the Iron Horse trail.





Hi Rich,

Hope you are doing well. I'm writing to you today because I am now working for the Muscular Dystrophu Association and we have a Fill The Boot event next week with the Alameda County Fire Fighters. We had one yesterday in San Leandro and Gary Centoni came out with his son. We were talking and thought maybe some of the other retired guys might like to come our for the event. Next Friday, the 26th we'll be in Castro Valley at Redwood Road and Castro Valley Blvd.
I was hoping you could spread the word, see if anyone would like to join us out there next week.
Thanks so much!


Local Firefighters Cover All Corners for Muscular Dystrophy


Off-duty firefighters rallied on all corners of the intersection of Alvarado Niles and Decoto roads to "Fill-the-Boot" on Tuesday, Aug. 16. Together, they raised more than $2,000 for local residents with muscular dystrophy.

The members of the Alameda County Fire Fighters Association love to give.

What else could possibly possess the firefighters, who work an average of 56 hours per week, to take their valuable time off and stand on the four corners at the intersection of of Alvarado-Niles and Decoto Roads, boots in hand, collecting donations?

“It’s all just raising money for kids...that have any one of the neurological disorders (like muscular dystrophy)," explained Frank Harrah, a firefighter and paramedic taking part in the annual International Association of Fire Fighters Local 55 "Fill-the-Boot" fundraiser for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. The benefit event was on Tuesday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

All of the money raised goes to local MDA families, Harrah said.

Throughout the afternoon, the men and women of Local 55 raised $2,203 by standing on the four corners of one of Union City’s busiest intersections, boots and signs in hand, calling out to passing cars, hoping to see a dollar bill peek out of an open window when the traffic stopped at the lights.

The relationship between the MDA and the IAFF began in 1954 and the IAFF continues to be one of the largest contributors to the organization, according to Kirsha Zupetz of the MDA.

Their relationship created Fill-the-Boot, and Tuesday's donations will remain close to home within the Local 55 jurisdiction, Zupetz said.

“The MDA has camps all over the country. The kids...have dedicated counselors helping them out because, unfortunately, they have debilitating diseases that prevent them from swimming or playing sports. Some of the funds help with pioneering treatments as well," Zupetz said.

It's not just children who are affected by muscular dystrophy. According Harrah, a few firefighters from agencies in the Bay Area have been diagnosed with conditions requiring treatment at an MDA center.

Harrah and his fellow firefighters spent Tuesday morning and afternoon collecting bills, change and even checks made out to the MDA from generous drivers.

A few creative men even did backflips and pushups as a "thank you" for sizable donations.

New hire Francisco Navarro, from ?Alameda County Fire Department Station 32? here in Union City, was among the afternoon's more enthusiastic participants.

"Being new to the department, I'm willing to do whatever is asked of me. They said come out here, meet people, and I said 'I'm there!'," Navarro said.

Keep filling the boot

If you would like to help Local 55 Fill-the-Boot, you can visit them at their next donation drive on Thursday, Aug. 18, in San Leandro. Beginning at 9 a.m., off-duty firefighters will be out in force at the intersection of Fairmont Drive and East 14th Street in San Leandro, adjacent to Bayfair Mall.

You can also catch them in Castro Valley on Friday, Aug. 26, from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the intersection of Castro Valley Boulevard and Redwood Road, adjacent to Safeway.

From Jeremy Roderick:

I am happy to announce a new addition to the Gonzales Family!


On Wednesday August 17th, Jason Gonzales and wife Beth brought into the world a healthy baby Boy! Lucas Gonzales, weighing in at 7 lbs, 15 oz. and 18.5" long. The family is now back at home and all are happy and doing well.


Please join me in congratulating Jason and Beth on their new arrival.


8/3/2011 from Pat Corbiere:

Hi Rich,

I just noticed the news about the San Leandro City Council approving the memorial for Luster Knight. I'm very pleased to hear this. If anyone deserved recognition, it was Luster for all the things he did for others. I know I owe him because I don't know if I would've finished that book if he hadn't urged me on. I will never forget his laugh, and his mother in a conversation I had with her said she misses him every day. Most of us will never know what he went through as a child. Mahatma Gandhi stated that every person deserves to be treated with dignity. Then there are those who should be memorialized. Luster is one of those. Alameda County Fire can be proud he was one of us.

ps. Fyi Rich, with the urging of my family and my book website creator, I will be jumping into Facebook reluctantly. Maybe, I'm old fashioned, but I like to look at a person when I talk to them, but I will give this a try. I was told it will help get info on the book out. Some of you already know I'm on Facebook. Kathy set it up, and any day, I'll get the courage to jump in. Be patient please. Also, my publisher is pressing me to put a screenplay together on it. I'll try if it can get more dough for the Ruch champ camp. See you on Facebook unless I screw it up. Rich. I also met someone who played a dobro and is trying to put together a collection of American folk music and blues.

As far as Kathy and me: we've settled in up here in the Northwest, taken a few trips, hitting golf balls again, riding bikes and enjoying this beautiful country, but we've also had some family tragedies. Kathy lost her mother, her aunt, her cousin's father-in-law who was a survivor of Pearl Harbor. I lost my uncle, my older brother and master-sergeant-mother had a stroke and is in a senior care facility. Life is such a short dance, we can only love and live it the best we can. Well, I guess I better sign off. I'm getting too wordy. The best to you and the rest of the guys. Pat


6/13/2011 from Sue Beville:

The Alameda County Fire Department invites you to celebrate the retirement of Captain Bill Potts

A gathering will be held in his honor on

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Reception 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm

Alameda County Fire Department Station 25 Training Room

20336 San Miguel Avenue Castro Valley, California 94546

Please confirm your attendance by calling 510-618-3485

Or by email:


6/1/2011 from Jin Dorpinghaus:


We got the Bresnan a few days ago with the story about Wilson Sandrey's passing. What others said about him is so true. He had a quiet demeanor and didn't hesitate to take time to lend a hand or show a newer member the 'ropes'. He and I remained in contact by mail for many years and though his letters were short, they said a lot. A family member wrote to inform me of his passing and also sent a memorial card which was very much appreciated.

Mikinka touched on Sandy making homemade noodles. I remember them along with some of the other meals he prepared that was good old down home cooking, Iowa style. One thing not mentioned was the soup concoctions we came up with at Station 4. Some were pretty exotic, for sure. We began by taking the leftovers from the off going shift and went from there. Too, we worked 7 shifts before getting days off and whatever was left from our meal the previous shift, went in the pot. By the 7th shift, that pot of soup was "talking to us". However, the concoction that stood out was on the last shift before our days off and there was just about everything imaginable in the pot--that is everything but one addition, and it came from Robertson. He'd brought spaghetti and meatballs from home for his lunch that day, but tossed it in the pot for some "extra added flavor". I recall it tasted a lot better than it looked with a couple of us actually going for another serving. The only person refraining from the soups was Capt. Harsch. He was nearing retirement and most likely didn't want to take any chances on what he ate. A smart man, indeed!!

Robertson mentioned Mike Fitzgerald being at station 4 years ago. I have a little story to tell about Mike, and I'm most likely the person whom taught him his first 'lesson' as a new firefighter. I was assigned to drive the Squad that day and noted a small leak in the radiator when checking it that morning. I mentioned putting in some stop leak until it could be taken to the garage for repair. Capt. Harsch okayed the suggestion and sent Mike and I on the detail. While pouring the solution in the radiator, Mike had been looking at all the buttons on the dash and pushed one that wasn't marked. It happened to be for the air horn which blasted with my head under the hood. Needless to say, I banged my head real good, ending with a sore spot on the dome and Mike apologizing profusely. I was not a happy camper, but accepted his apology by telling him it was good policy to ask FIRST before acting on his own. All I'll add to that is 'you came a long way, Fitz, after that meager beginning!!

There were some new names on the list of members attending the retiree's luncheon. My name would have been there, but a little surgery got in the way when I was hospitalized with a badly infected gall bladder. They finally dislodged the stone by sending me to San Francisco by ambulance for one very hard and bumpy ride. A follow-up MRI the next day revealed more stones, so it came out on April 7 The infection had spread, but copious amounts of anti-biotics brought it under control before the surgery. Have been home for a while, but the energy level is slow on returning. Am about a 6 on the 1 to 10 scale. Too, just had #77, so the aging bit probably plays a hand. My present goal is 80 and beyond--and I'll be there next year, the good Lord willing and the creeks don't rise.

A big HI to all and hope this finds everyone feeling well at this time--take care and God bless---!!!


6/1/2011 from Evan Siggelkow:


This is for past donations that I missed.  Thanks for all your good work.

Sad to hear about Sandrey.  He was on our crew at station 4 for a long time.  He was a joy to work with.


5/23/2011 this was forwarded to me:

Captain Jamie Harrison Baby Announcement


Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: C:\Users\fergman\AppData\Local\Temp\Intellect\Mail\image003.jpg


Baby Harrison has arrived!


Elliana (Ellie) Grace

6 lbs, 6 oz

Born at 2304 hours on May 17, 2011


Both Mom and Ellie are doing great!


5/18/2011 from TJ Walsh


Chief Rich Milan suffered a fractured hip after a fall on his road bike. He was returning from the Amgen race and he took the fall while rounding a turn on Calaveras Rd near the Santa Clara / Alameda County Line. He will be undergoing surgery tomorrow morning. The Milan family appreciates everyone’s concern and support. Keep rich in your thoughts and prayers.


He is currently at Kaiser Fremont.


John T. Walsh


4/28/2011 from Dave Tibbets:


Dear Rich,

As I approach my ten year retirement anniversary (June 15, 2011) I thought it appropriate to pay up on my past due Bresnan donations. So, here's ten years worth of back payments ($100). Sorry it took a decade. But, I do want to thank you Rich, for being faithful to this worthwhile endeavor to keep retirees informed of all the important news concerning their former colleagues and friends. The Bresnan provides that forum we all need to help keep our Brotherhood connected as we journey into the future.


You may have heard that Sandy and I have moved to the beautiful Mother lode Country of Sonora, California. The most difficult part was selling our home in Castro Valley where we lived for twenty four years and raised our children. The home sold quickly for the price we wanted, but the sentimental separation was a little melancholy. Mostly for our children. Now, a year later, we are settled into our park-like setting with oaks and cedars on almost three acres in a comfortable home about half way between Sonora and Twain Harte at three thousand feet elevation. Our first winter here was the heaviest and most snow seen in thirty years. Now that Spring is on us, there is lots of work to do before Summer, when I concentrate on fishing and playing golf.


We are very happy, and feel comfortable and secure in this community as we are only about two hours from our kids and the Bay Area and an hour and a half from Yosemite. We do get ALL four seasons and, except for Winter, we live outside most of the time.


I hope all who read this will think about coming for a visit. There are many wonderful sights and attractions within a short distance and our door is always open to our Fire Department friends.


Thanks, again Rich. I hope to send you some fresh copy for the Bresnan later this year.



Dave Tibbets


4/19/2011 from Bill Robertson:

Rich... Was sad to hear of "Sandy's" passing.  I had been in touch with him each year at Christmas time with an exchange of cards.  Had sent one last year but had not received a reply so I had expected the worst.  He is the last of a crew that we had at the old Station 4 in San Leandro except for Hal Ryder and myself.  The others were Capt. Ed Harsch, Vern Avilla, Wilson Sandrey, Lyle Gruggle and a rookie who most of you know, Mike Fitzgerald who fortunately, I was able to join at the luncheon for retirees at the Hof Brau.  Hal, Mike, and myself are the last ones left. Am still in touch with Hal also, but haven't had the chance to see him lately.


   While I'm at it, as I mentioned to you at the luncheon, I will put this in writing now regarding Emil Macdonald.. In 1950 I had been on the San Leandro Fire Dept. for about 19 months when I was recalled back into the US Navy and sent to Korea.  The city hired MacDonald to work in my place while I was in the service.  Upon my return after being gone for one year I was going to return to work in the Fire Dept. and the City was going to let Mac go but our Assn. argued with the city that he was needed.  I had been elected as the Firefighters’ Assn. President, and along with the rest of the Dept. we argued that he was a needed member and was subsequently kept on the Fire Dept.  I have always felt that Mac and I had that association with each other.


   Just another bit of nostalgia I told you I would put in writing. 


   Something else I thought I'd put in writing, Ray Jannson, Joe Pistante and myself all lived in the same neighborhood as kids and all went to the same schools.  Ironically we all ended up in the San Leandro Fire Dept., though Ray and Joe came over to the Dept. from Ashland by the City of San Leandro annexing their department into ours.


Hope this info is beneficial to you in your endeavor to get as much data as possible.  As I think of anything that may be of interest I'll pass it on to you. 


Fraternally... Bill Robertson


4/18/2011 from Steve Mikinka:


So sorry to hear about Wilson's passing. I had the pleasure of working with him in 1964 while I was a probationary fireman at old station four on 143rd. Ave.

Wilson was truly a nice person who treated everyone with respect.  He made sure I learned the ropes as a rookie and always looked after me at emergencies. I'll always remember him for his quiet demeanor and the ability he had for keeping everyone around him calm. My fondest memory is how he taught me how to make pasta noodles from scratch. I was quite surprised when he drug me out  behind the station and showed me what the hose rack was really for...drying the noodles so they'd be ready for dinner. I know Wilson will be missed - I'm glad he lived a long life.

Steve Mikinka


4/18/2011 from Rod Mendes:



Thank you for the information. It’s always sad to hear this kind of news.  Wilson was a good man and had a very big heart. Always there to help and one heck of a down home cook. I remember his homemade egg noodles and scalloped corn. My condolences to his family and the brotherhood.


Rod Mendes



Wilson Frank Lee Sandrey

Wilson Frank Lee Sandrey, 89, of Humboldt went home to be with his Lord on Apr. 17th, 2011. He passed away at the Paula Baber Hospice Home in Fort Dodge.  Services  will be at 11:00 am Tues. Apr. 19 at the Mason Lindhart Funeral Home.  Inurnment will be at Ell Township Cemetery in Klemme.  Visitation will be one hour before the start of the service.
Wilson was born on January 17, 1922 in Klemme, IA. He graduated from high school in 1941.  He married Lila Mae Odland in 1942 and in 1948 they moved to California where Wilson was a fireman for the City of San Leandro for many years.  After retirement they moved to Lucerne California.  Lila Mae passed away in Feb. 1994 and in Nov. 1994 he married Betty Steding.  In 2001 Betty and Wilson moved to Humboldt, Iowa.
Wilson is survived by his second and loving wife of 16 years, Betty Steding Sandrey; daughter Ava M. Sandrey, Sacramento, CA,; son, John W ( Audrey) Sandrey, Tracy, CA; granddaughters Pamela (Herb) Byers, Clancy  MT,  and Christina (Brian) Oliver, Tracy, CA, great grandsons Donovan and Dylan Sandrey and Brandon and Tyler Oliver, great great-granddaughters, Melody Crawford and Samantha Sandrey, step-daughter Jan (LeRoy) Jorgensen, Humboldt, IA step-daughter in-law, Kathy Steding, Latimer, IA, stepson Michael (June) Steding , Longwood Fl and several step grandchildren, step great grandchildren and one step great great-grandchild.
He was preceded in death by his first wife of 52 years Lila Mae Sandrey, his parents, brother William Sandrey, sisters Ava Sandrey, Katherine Dihlman, Frances Merkle, Ada Wild and Ethel Padden.
The Mason Lindhart Funeral Home is in charge of arrangements.

4/0/2011 from Dave Lord:

We have had several inquiries about the service for Diane LeMoine, please see below:


The viewing will be at the Wilson-Kratzer Mortuary in Danville on 825 Hartz Way. It will be Thursday, April 14th from 5pm to 8pm.

The Funeral Service will be held on Friday the 15th beginning at 10:30am at the Neighborhood Church 20600 John Drive in Castro Valley. After the funeral we will head to the Mt View Cemetery in Oakland for the burial.





David Lord

Deputy Chief, ACFD

925-422-3401 (office)

510-693-3401 (mobile)


Sorry for more bad news

From: Rocha, David, ACFD

Sent: Wednesday, April 06, 2011 11:40 PM


Subject: Dianne Lemoine



I'm deeply saddened to inform you of the passing of Captain Jason Lemoine's mother this evening.  Dianne was also Deputy Chief Lord’s aunt.  Dianne suffered from complications associated with ruptured aneurysm which occurred during surgery last Thursday.  Her family has been at her side since the surgery and I know she has been in the thoughts and prayers of many of our members.




Both Diane and Jim will always be in our hearts and memories.  Please continue to keep Jason, Dave and the Lemoine family in your thoughts.




David A Rocha, Deputy Fire Chief

4/8/2011 from Mike Menchini:

Eng. Paul Murphy lost his Father this week.  Below are the services...


From: Menchini, Michael, ACFD

Sent: Wednesday, April 06, 2011 8:06 PM


Subject: Paul Murphey"s Fathers Passing


All ACFD Personnel.

If you did not know, Engineer Paul Murphey’s Father passed away this week.

Paul is doing as expected, working thru the difficult time with family and friends.


He has asked that that I share the details of his fathers burial and celebration of life information with the department.



Sunday, April 10th @ 4:00pm Guerrero Mortuary 407 Estudillo Ave. San Leandro, Ca. 94577



Monday, April 11th @ 10:00am St. Leander’s Catholic Church 550 W. Estudillo Ave. San Leandro, Ca. 94577



Following the funeral service Holy Sepulchre Cemetery 1051 Harder Road Hayward, Ca. 94542



Following Internment El Toritos Restaurant 5 Monarch Bay Dr. San Leandro, Ca. 94577

*If you plan to attend, no ACFD uniform is needed.

*Instead, if you wish; wear an ACFD Baseball Cap (as his dad regularly did) in Honor of his Father.


Thank you,


Michael J. Menchini


Fire Captain

Alameda County Fire Department

Station 18

4800 Fallon Road, Dublin Ca. 94568

(925) 803-7118 Fax (925) 828-3961

4/8/2011 from Dave Lord:

Subject: Jason LeMoine's Mother

All Personnel,


A message from Jason LeMoine regarding his mothers condition. There has been inquiry from several Department members.


In Mid February Jason came home from work and witnessed his mother having stroke like symptoms. He  rushed her to John Muir and the symptoms resolved, diagnosis TIA. The Cat Scan showed she had a small aneurysm on one of the main arteries in her brain. As an elective procedure she chose to have it repaired using a treatment called coiling. This is a very low risk procedure that permanently repairs the problem.


                This last Thursday she went in for a 4 hour procedure that ended up having complications and the aneurysm ruptured. Since Thursday it has been touch and go and her condition remains extremely critical. The doctors are not giving us any predictions for survival and we are in a waiting pattern.


                So far, the family has been blessed to have Chaplain Larry Vold spending time with us and Jason has been in communication with some folks here in the department. I will keep you updated if we turn the corner and if there is any changes.




David Lord

4/5/2011 from Vince Davis:


Hi Guys,


Sorry to be the bearer of bad news. Jason LeMoine called me and told me that Diane was in for a routine repair of an aneurysm, there were complications and she is in very critical condition at John Muir Hospital. Please keep her in your thoughts and prayers. If you would like daily updates, send Jason an email at . Feel free to pass this email along to other retirees as well.


Be well



3/31/2011 from Bob Moore:


Thank you for being the conduit for us fire geezers.

We host an annual bluegrass fest at the Nevada Co. Fairgrounds (I’m sure you’re aware).  If you play of attend, you’re welcome to our house as we have a spare bedroom. 

Thanks again,

Bob Moore

3/31/2011 from Ray Nashimoto:

Hi Rich,


I have more info regarding Medicare if you would like to post it in an upcoming Bresnan.  This info came from BCN and it is pasted below.


 The letter CalPERS sends regarding Medicare can be very confusing. They send this letter immediately upon anyone retiring regardless of age and then again when the member is going to turn age 65. When a member qualifies for Part A of Medicare (this means it is provided at no cost) then they are Medicare qualified.


Medicare Part A helps cover inpatient care in hospitals, critical access hospitals and skilled nursing facilities. It also covers hospice care and some home health care.



Medicare Part B helps cover doctors’ services, outpatient hospital care, and some other medical services that Medicare Part A doesn’t cover, such as some of the services of physical and occupational therapists, and some home health care. Medicare Part B helps pay for these covered services and supplies when they are medically necessary.



If you are eligible for Medicare Part A, you are also eligible for Medicare Part B. If you qualify for premium-free Part A – either in your own right or through a current, former, or deceased spouse – you  must enroll in Part B at age 65 (or earlier if you qualify due to a disability) to continue your group coverage through CalPERS.


Anyone who is a citizen after age 65 can sign up for Medicare but if they are not qualified then they would have to pay for Part A.


This is an interesting fact I found on the “CalPERS Website.”

If you are a State of  California retiree and you or your family members are enrolled in a CalPERS Medicare health plan,  California law requires CalPERS to reimburse you for a portion of your Medicare Part B premium.


A member will pay the following for Part B if their income is:

Filing Single                        Filing Joint

$85,000 or below

$170,000 or below











above $213,000

above $426,000




Bottom Line:


If a member is not Medicare qualified – either in their own right or through a current, former, or deceased spouse – they should NOT sign up for Medicare at age 65. The member should maintain their pre age 65 CalPERS Basic Health Plan.


Members hired after 1986 will be qualified for Medicare and MUST sign up for Medicare upon reaching age 65.



Take Care,

Ryan Nishimoto

ACFFA IAFF Local #55 - Advisory Committee Chairperson



3/30/2011 from Jeff Zolferelli:

Hi Rich....


my sincere apologies for not being able to spend more time chatting this past weekend at the Goodguys event.  It seemed as we began to chat others asked me questions and I was drawn away; that is not the best way to share with a friend and catch I thought maybe we could have breakfast one morning.  I am planning attending the next FFFC breakfast in April as well and the retiree’s luncheon....I think I may qualify as a retiree...???


And I wanted to share with you a couple of ways I have tried to nudge others, one is the plaque that now hangs in my home and hung in my department office for a number of years, even when all the smoke about exhibiting Christian items at Christmas time was a big taboo...I have proudly displayed..Philipians 4:13, ..."I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me..."...and what I have under the back brim of my helmet...something that has kept me safe and out of harms way I am sure...Isaiah 43:2-3, "When you pass through the waters I will be with you, And through the rivers, they shall not overflow you; When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned.  Nor shall the flames scorch you.  For I am the Lord your God,"....


Look foreword to getting together,


God Bless....



3/23/2011 from Jody Naas:

Hi Rich,
Just thought I'd drop you a note.  Rick Altemus went through back surgery on Valentines Day and had some vertebrae fused.  He is doing well, feeling better every day.  His Doc told him the surgery will take 5 strokes off Rick's golf game, so Rick is really motivated to get well and get back on the golf course.
I have attached a pic of me and Jerry Skaggs on the big island of Hawaii.  Jerry and Linda were there for 6 weeks and Sue and I went over to visit for a week.  We drove over to the volcano and walked out on to the lava beds where the lava was actively flowing (see pic). Yep, it's hot where we are standing!!! Hope all is well,
Jody Naas


More on Medicare: from Tom Boggs 3/23/2011:


 It is with great enjoyment I read through the Bresnan. I get mine via email, so you can save a stamp.

 I want to address the Medicare issue. I turn 67 in a few months, so have been forced into this program last year. I am a Kaiser covered guy, and there-in is the problem. I encourage anyone going into the Medicare to stay on top of them. I moved to southern Cal in November, 2010. I started the move with Kaiser in mid-October. I am still hassling with them in March, 2011. Seems they did not transfer me until February, then did not transfer the Senior Advantage with the change. Last week I got a letter from PERS they were dropping my coverage. I had to do some fast scrambling to get that taken care of. I now have three Kaiser Cards with different numbers, so will be back in their office tomorrow.

  If anyone will be moving out of the Northern Kaiser to another Kaiser area, stay on top of them.

 Hope no one else has to go through this.

God Bless,



3/9/2011 from Ryan Nishimoto ACFFA IAFF Local #55 - Advisory Committee Chairperson 707-980-2006

Hi Rich,


Lennie Orr and Gary Henthorn have passed on some information to me regarding medical benefits for retirees.  I have posted it on our Union website, but I wanted you to have it as well in case you wanted to post it in the next Bresnan.  It is attached to this e-mail.

Also feel free to pass along our new union website which also has a retiree message board.  The address is

Please give me a call or e-mail if you have any questions.





Jess Anderson             305-7244
Ryan  FD, Medicare info.     707-980-2006 Refereed me to BCN
BCN,  Medicare Dawn Hill  800-876-1088
Lennie Orr                            


Who has to join Medicare at age 65--------_ Everyone in our plan. or you loose your FD paid Basic health Insurance.

At 65 your Basic Health insurance STOPS! You are then converted to a Medicare plan like (Blue Cross Medicare or Kaiser Medicare

Enrollment in Medicare Health plan is not automatic. You must complete a "Certification of Medicare Status form"

Your primary Health care provider then becomes Medicare and the other plan (Blue Cross, Kaiser etc.) becomes your secondary).

What if you don't join Medicare at 65-------_ If you don't join by age 65 your Monthly premium will increase by 10 percent every 12 months until you join. Your premium will stay at that increased amount the rest of your medicare life.

Which Medicare plans do I need to join---_ Parts A (Hospital) & Part B (Medical Ins.)

Do not enroll in Parts C or D.  We get these with or secondary plan (Blue Cross, Blue Shield, Kaiser etc.

Who Pays Medicare-------------------------------_ Not sure. As of now, Probably the Retiree

How much does Medicare Cost--------------_ Depends on if you paid into it and How much your Salary is.

Medicare cost Minimum is-------------------------_ $116 per month. And could be a lot more. Depends on income, If over 85K per year. You are billed every 3 months.

What if you didn't pay into Medicare-------_ You may be covered by your Spouse if they worked and paid there Medicare quarters.

Cal. State Law Prohibits Retirees from enrolling in CalPers Basic Health Plans, Unless you are ineligible for Medicare.

Who has to have other Health Ins-----------_

Can you keep existing Insurance ------------_ No

Does Blue Cross Cost me ----------------------_No, if you take BC Medicare Plan. If you upgrade from PersChoice to PersCare, then you will have to pay for the Difference.

If FD is paying $1126 for Pers Choice now, it will drop to $939 per mo. when you go to the Medicare Plans. No, you can't put this savings toward your mandatory Medicare payments, as yet?

Start the process 3 months before your to turn 65.

Booklets needed; CalPers Medicare Enrollment Guide #HBD-65

Certification of Medicare Status # HBS-zo1 , OSH520 - D, N, O & P.

Welcome to Medicare; #11095

CalPers 888-225-7377,

Social Security 800-772-1213,,, .

Medicare 800-633-4227, &


2/15/2011 from Jody Naas

Just thought I'd let you guys know that Rick's back surgery was today, Feb 14 at Eden Hospital.  I talked to Rick this evening and he said everything went OK according to his Dr.  He should be out within the next 3-5 days.  He is in Room 6100 at Eden in Castro Valley.

Jody Naas


Here are some of the emails about Dale Valentine:

Hi Rich,

Thought you might want to show a picture of the big winner. It is great to see one of our own win the big one. Congratulations Dale what a story this would have been while sitting around the table with our coffee at shift change. Take care and have fun Monster win - By Staff reports MIDDLETOWN -- A Twin Pine Casino & Hotel customer got really lucky Tuesday hitting a slot machine jackpot of $8,430,301. View Full Story

Steve Gross



Heard on the news this afternoon that Dale hit a slot machine in a casino up in the Lake county area for 8.5 million. Congratulations to him.

Floyd Nabonne


Finally Dale can afford to buy me those elevator shoes he promised years ago.

Jerry Skaggs


Did you hear Dale Valentine won 8.4 million at a Casino up North?

Ben Kellogg


Rich..  The Santa Rosa Press Democrat newspaper today has an article stating that a Dale Valentine hit the Jackpot at the Twin Pine Indian Casino for over 8 million dollars.  Couldn't have happened to a nicer guy.  No doubt this is a human interest story....Bill Robertson


 All the times we played poker with Dale and he wouldn't even know what game we were playing and he would win anyway - this does not surprise me at all...good for you Dale! Lyle Stepman


Haha. Mr Lucky finally got real lucky!!! Good for Dale. Think I'll set up a hospice......LOL

Rich Milan