Newark, NJ – U.S. Senator Robert Menendez (D-NJ) today joined Asbury Park Deputy Mayor John Lefredo and Fire Chief Kevin Keddy to present a “big check” to the Asbury Park Fire Department for funding to significantly modernize a key fire fighting vehicle. The $617,500 Assistance to Firefighter Grant (AFG) will be used to remount an old vehicle. Menendez took a tour of the fire station and thanked firefighters for their heroism and dedication.

“There is no more selfless, more courageous job than that of a firefighter,” said Senator Menendez. “It defies all logic and reason to run into a burning building, but you do it anyway. For that you are all heroes, and I’m proud to help by presenting you with this grant to keep our promise to our first responders after 9-11 and make sure you have the equipment you need to do your jobs. It is my hope that with this funding and with your improved vehicle, you will go to work feeling safe. Know that you have the best equipment possible to make the people of Asbury Park, who depend on well-trained and well-equipped firefighters, safer.”

“I want to welcome Senator Menendez as he has always been a friend of our city,” said Mayor Ed Johnson. “We are appreciative of his support of our men and women in uniform and his clear understanding of the importance of their service. He has been to Asbury Park several times and we are always happy to have him, especially on an occasion like this.”  

“I just want to express how thankful we are to the Senator and all the legislators who support these grants,” said Asbury Park Fire Chief Kevin Keddy. “Asbury Park is a poor city, and from the bottom of my heart I can say that without these grants our ability to help the community would have been seriously impeded. This has really been a godsend.” 

Asbury Park’s Fire Department is staffed with skilled, cross-trained firefighter/emergency medical technicians who provide basic life support skills and fight fires. Specialty teams allow the Asbury Park Fire Department to deal with chemical spills, provide technical rescues to individuals trapped in water, trenches, confined spaces, or collapsed buildings. The Asbury Park Fire Department employs approximately 60 people, of which, 53 are certified Firefighter/Emergency Medical Technicians.

Since 2006, Asbury Park has received more than $2.2 million in funds to hire personnel improve emergency response.