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Jake Milliken, Gunther's Taproom responder, honored by Northport officials

Firefighters outside Gunther's Tap Room in Northport after

Firefighters outside Gunther's Tap Room in Northport after a blaze broke out around 7 a.m. Tuesday, May 23, 2017. The famous bar was once frequented by the Beat Generation writer Jack Kerouac. Credit: Newsday / Lawrence Striegel

Northport officials have honored the firefighter who first spotted and intervened in the fire at Gunther’s Taproom, a popular village bar and former haunt of Beat Generation writer Jack Kerouac.

Jake Milliken, also an EMT and an employee of the Northport Highway Department, was on his way to work early on May 23 when he noticed smoke coming from the Main Street bar, officials said.

“In disregard of his own safety, Jake ran into the building up a flight of stairs, all the while yelling ‘fire,’ ” Mayor George Doll said.

Milliken banged on the door of each apartment in the building, ensuring all units were empty, according to the proclamation of gratitude that officials presented to him on Tuesday at Village Hall.

Milliken then ran to the firehouse to alert the rest of the department and donned his gear before returning to the scene to help put out the blaze.

The owners of the bar have pledged to rebuild and restore the bar.

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