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Posted on: December 13, 2023

Allingtown Fire Department swears in first female career firefighter in 116 years

Allingtown FD Swearing In 2291 II (Small)

PHOTO — New City of West Haven Fire Department Allingtown firefighter/EMT Samantha Trayer, left, shakes hands with Allingtown Board of Fire Commissioners Chairwoman Iris Diaz after being sworn in by Diaz at Minor Park Station in West Haven on Tuesday night, Dec. 12. Looking on are, from left, Trayer’s mother, Wendy, and Allingtown Chief Michael R. Terenzio. Trayer is the department’s first female career firefighter. (City Photo/Michael P. Walsh)

WEST HAVEN, Dec. 13, 2023 — Allingtown’s first female career firefighter was sworn in during a ceremony at Minor Park Station on Tuesday night, Dec. 12.

Iris Diaz, the chairwoman of the Board of Fire Commissioners of the City of West Haven Fire Department Allingtown, administered the oath of appointment to firefighter/EMT Samantha Trayer inside the crowded firehouse at 318 Fairfax St., as more than three dozen commissioners, chiefs, officers and firefighters from the 116-year-old department and West Haven’s other two fire departments witnessed history in the making.

Trayer was joined by new career firefighter/paramedic John Kennedy, whom Diaz also swore in at the historic ceremony.

“This swearing-in ceremony marks a new chapter in the City of West Haven Fire Department Allingtown officially adding our first female career firefighter to its ranks,” said Chief Michael R. Terenzio, as applause erupted from the departments’ members and the firefighters’ families and friends.

Terenzio proudly told the crowd that Trayer, 32, of Milford, completed the Connecticut Fire Academy’s 14-week Recruit Firefighter Program near the top of her class.

A third career firefighter/EMT, Christopher Jordan, was set to take the oath of appointment but was unable to attend because of an illness, Terenzio said.

Kennedy, 37, and Jordan, 39, laterally transferred from fire departments in Arizona and Virginia, respectively, after completing Allingtown’s application process.

Kennedy, now of Wallingford, grew up in West Haven and was a volunteer firefighter at Steven Heights Engine Company 5 on Meloy Road.

Jordan now lives in Norwalk.

The half-hour ceremony featured welcoming remarks by Terenzio, who noted the event was open to the public for the first time since the coronavirus pandemic, and congratulatory remarks by Mayor Dorinda Borer, who noted the ceremony was her first public event as West Haven’s chief elected official.

“To our firefighters Samantha and John, thank you for choosing such a noble profession,” Borer said. “The bravery and the sacrifice that you provide in your line of duty and your service is really commendable. On behalf of the city of West Haven, we are proud of you, we are there for you — because I know you’ll be there for us.”

Trayer’s mother, Wendy, then pinned a firefighter badge on her daughter. Kennedy’s wife, Angela, followed and pinned a firefighter badge on her husband as their daughter, Charlie, 1, gazed from a few steps away.

The ceremony was attended by Councilwoman Dawn Callahan, D-6, and Allingtown Commissioners Frederick Brown, Andrea Palumbo and Troy Tappin.

It included the Pledge of Allegiance led by Diaz and opening and closing prayers given by department chaplain Victor M. Borras.

West Haven’s storied fire service includes the 3rd District’s formerly independent Allingtown Fire Department, which was taken over by the city in July 2012 and is now known as the City of West Haven Fire Department Allingtown. It also includes the independent West Haven Fire Department, which serves the First Fire Taxation, or Center, District, and the independent West Shore Fire Department, which serves the Shore’s 2nd District.

Collectively, the departments have been in operation for 354 years: West Haven since 1888, Allingtown since 1907 and West Shore since 1918.

— MICHAEL P. WALSH, Public Relations Information Coordinator

Allingtown FD Swearing In 2291 II (Small)

New City of West Haven Fire Department Allingtown firefighter/EMT Samantha Trayer, left, shakes hands with Allingtown Board of Fire Commissioners Chairwoman Iris Diaz after being sworn in by Diaz at Minor Park Station in West Haven on Tuesday night, Dec. 12. Looking on are, from left, Trayer’s mother, Wendy, and Allingtown Chief Michael R. Terenzio. Trayer is the department’s first female career firefighter. (City Photo/Michael P. Walsh)

Allingtown FD Swearing In 2302 II (Small)

New City of West Haven Fire Department Allingtown firefighter/paramedic John Kennedy, accompanied by wife Angela, is administered the oath of appointment by Allingtown Board of Fire Commissioners Chairwoman Iris Diaz at Minor Park Station in West Haven on Tuesday night, Dec. 12. Looking on is Allingtown Chief Michael R. Terenzio. Kennedy laterally transferred from a fire department in Arizona. (City Photo/Michael P. Walsh)

Allingtown FD Swearing In 2294 II (Small)

Wendy Trayer pins a firefighter badge on her daughter, new City of West Haven Fire Department Allingtown career firefighter/EMT Samantha Trayer. (City Photo/Michael P. Walsh)

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Chief Michael R. Terenzio smiles as Angela Kennedy pins a firefighter badge on her husband, new City of West Haven Fire Department Allingtown career firefighter/paramedic John Kennedy. (City Photo/Michael P. Walsh)

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City of West Haven Fire Department Allingtown Chief Michael R. Terenzio delivers opening remarks. (City Photo/Michael P. Walsh)

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West Haven Mayor Dorinda Borer delivers remarks congratulating the newly sworn-in firefighters of the City of West Haven Fire Department Allingtown. (City Photo/Michael P. Walsh)

Allingtown FD Swearing In 1001 (Small)

West Haven Councilwoman Dawn Callahan, D-6, with City of West Haven Fire Department Allingtown Chief Michael R. Terenzio and Deputy Chief Michael T. Esposito. (City Photo/Michael P. Walsh)

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