Firefighter promotions a fun community celebration

Posted 3/2/23

People were having too much fun talking and meeting their friends to heed Lt. Michael Boynton Jr. Wednesday night.

He tried for a second time asking people to take their seats at the Grand …

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Firefighter promotions a fun community celebration


People were having too much fun talking and meeting their friends to heed Lt. Michael Boynton Jr. Wednesday night.

He tried for a second time asking people to take their seats at the Grand Ballroom of the Crowne Plaza as the ceremony was about to start.

Maybe they heard him, maybe they didn’t. 

The level of conversation dimmed somewhat, but at least a third of the tables arranged by family names were empty. The chatter in the hallway was at full volume. Firefighters started closing the doors and as they did doors at the far end of the room opened. The sound of bagpipes drowned out all conversation as the RI Professional Fire Fighters and Drums in their kilts strutted into the ball room soon followed by the mayor, chief and the department’s color guard.

The promotional ceremony of 21 firefights was off and running and Boynton had full command of the show.

The colors were posted, Inspector Ethan Andrews sang the National Anthem and Mayor Frank Picozzi and Fire Chief Peter McMichael extended their greetings. It was clockwork.

Father Robert Marciano, Fire and Police Chaplain, president of Bishop Hendricken High School and pastor of St. Kevin delivered the invocation.

“We are ever grateful for Warwick’s bravest and their daily dedication to the noble profession that is heirs and the brave lives that they lead to keep us safe. Blass them this night and always protect them in their duties,” he said.

Appreciation of service was also a theme in the remarks of Lt. Michael Carreiro, president of Warwick Firefighters Local 2748.

He said the promotional ceremony marks a passage in the history of the department and recognizes the new leadership roles within the department.

“How lucky we are that they bring with these promotions their experience, their passion for those job and split-second sense of how best to respond in the worst of situations.”

For the department and its companies to succeed he said, “you must have control over your engagement and responses to issues. You need to be motivators, and forward thinkers to keep our mission in the forefront of everything we do. Our mission is, and will always be, to save lives and protect property.”

The promotional ceremony, hosted by the fire fighters union, has become a means of recognizing promotions during the past year and bringing together family, friends and officials to celebrate the occasion. Officers raised their right hands collectively to recite the oath as read by Mayor Picozzi. Then one-by-one Boynton read the names of those promoted who stepped forward to be congratulated by the mayor and Fire Chief Peter McMichael and pinned by a family member that in some cases was a retired member of the department.

In other cases young children raced ahead of their mothers to hug their fathers around their knees  while mothers and grandmothers performed the honors of affixing badges.

The entire audience stood to applaud when Boynton announced that WWII veteran Maurice Roland Boulais would pin Assistant Fire Marshal Ethan Andrews.  Now 97, Boulais was 17 when he enlisted in the US Navy. He served as a flight mechanic.  Accompanied by son-in law Harry Andrews, Ethan’s father, with a steady hand Boulais secured the badge with family and friends rushing forward to capture the moment.

A buffet dinner concluded the ceremony.

Those promoted are:  Deputy Chief of Division of Training Thomas Brady; Deputy Chief of Division of Training Michael Mernick; Deputy Chief of EMS Gerard Bogossian; Battalion Chief Matthew O’Donnell and  Battalion Chief Matthew Richards.

Also,  Captain Robert Vallely; Captain Scott Jenson; Captain Daniel DeRobbio; Assistant Fire Marshal Ethan Andrews; Rescue Captain Kevin Rivet and Rescue Captain Timothy Baribault.

Also, Lieutenant Kevin Silva; Lieutenant Thomas Maymon; Lieutenant Robert Palumbo, Jr.; Lieutenant Manton Madison II; Lieutenant Joshua Clift; Lieutenant Thomas Giblin; Lieutenant Matthew DelBonis; Rescue Lieutenant Todd Berthiaume; Rescue Lieutenant Douglas Hammond; Rescue Lieutenant Michael Colantonio; Inspector Christopher Librizzi; Inspector Noah Craven and Inspector Gary Lavoie.

firefighters, promotion


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