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Northport ex-fire chief receives community achievement award

The Firemen's Association of the State of New

The Firemen's Association of the State of New York named John McKenna, a 30-year member of the Northport Fire Department, as the 2016 recipient of the Fire Service Community Achievement Award during a ceremony on Monday, June 20, 2016, at the Northport Fire Department. Credit: FASNY

A veteran volunteer firefighter from Northport has been named recipient of a community achievement award by the Firemen’s Association of the State of New York, officials said.

Former Northport Fire Department Chief John McKenna, a 30-year member of the department, received the 2016 Fire Service Community Achievement Award, a statewide honor, at a ceremony Monday at the Northport Fire Department. The award is in recognition of activities in community service organizations outside of the recipient’s membership in the fire service.

“Simply put, John McKenna is a role model for all of us in the volunteer fire service,” FASNY president Robert McConville said in a statement released Tuesday. “His service and dedication to his community is remarkable. There can be no question that his work has made Northport, Huntington, and Long Island a better place for all. I can think of no better recipient.”

A graduate of Farmingdale State College and Stony Brook University, McKenna served more than 20 years as the Northport fire marshal in addition to his duties as a volunteer firefighter, officials said. He now works as a department dispatcher.

Since 2002, officials said, McKenna has been involved in the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, the nationally recognized organization dedicated to beating childhood cancer, and has assisted in raising more than $5.1 million in donations in Northport alone.

Officials said McKenna served on the St. Baldrick’s Board of Directors from 2003 to 2011 and is a board member emeritus.

McKenna joined the Northport Fire Department in 1986 and was Firefighter of the Year in 1995.

He received the Capt. James Mahoney Award in 2014, awarded by the Northport Board of Fire Commissioners.

McKenna received the EMS Excellence Award every year from 1988 to 2004, officials said, then received the Chief’s Award from 2006 to 2012. He also was awarded the Department Life Saving Medal in 1996, 2001 and 2007. His term as president of the Huntington Town Chiefs ended in May.

“For over 30 years, John has served Northport with honor and distinction,” Northport Fire Chief Brad Wine said in a statement, adding: “His list of honors and accomplishments is nearly too long to list. His dedication and service has been inspirational to all of us in Northport, and we are so proud that he is being recognized by FASNY for his tireless, invaluable service.”

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