March 17, 2012 hopefully set the Seattle record for most winter weather conditions before an Irish Parade. Rain, cold and about a ten minute snow shower brought anxious moments to the weather weary walkers. Alas, as the flag of Ireland was ceremoniously lifted to start the 4 Avenue festivities, the clouds parted giving way to some sunshine . Our Band, accompanied by Firefighters from all over Puget Sound, and IAFF 7th District Motorcycle Group Riders pushed North to the Westlake Center with what appeared to be our biggest crowd yet.
The Alaska Day 2011 deployment was important, rewarding and fun. Nine Members of the SFP&D performed at many venues during the 5 day adventure set in Alaska’s first capitol city of Sitka, where the 1867 purchase transfer of the Alaskan territory from Russian to U.S. holdings is primarily celebrated.
Thank You, Sitka !
The First Annual IAFF L-27 Combat Challenge was held at the JTF with Station 32’s Team garnering top athletic honors and Station 25 acquiring Top Team status for raising the most money for this Fund Raising event. Battalion Chief James Hilliard organized this great effort to help raise money for Seattle’s Bravest whilst feeding to the interdepartmental spirit of healthy competition . The SFP&D performed with some of our Members going “Both Ways” switching uniforms from Musician to Competitor.
Gilbert Mastri gets it done by accepting the Seattle Fire Department’s “Firefighter of the Year” Award for 2010.
As the Honor was bestowed, our Bass drummer found himself surrounded by his Company Officer, his Fire Chief and his Band o’ Brothers had his back. Gilbert’s altruistic nature is a Model for all.
Photo courtesy of Kathy F (more images in Kat’s Korner)
With Northwest Firefighters afoot, Fire Apparatus and FF Pipe Band Representatives from across the Country, Drum Major Ed Nelson (SFP&D) directs the group for Seattle’s St. Patrick’s Parade 2011. Members of our own SFP&D were accompanied by the Firefighter Bands of Snohomish County, Pierce County, Eastside (King) County, Tualatin Valley(Oregon) and Greater Boston. Post Parade functions continued into the evening at the collation featuring Irish traditional food, refreshments and music. Many Thanks to bouncehousewa.com The kids had great fun. Congratulations to our newest Band Member, Brady Hubler on the Sides…Slainte !
Our Band “Task Force” traveled to Sitka, Alaska, to Honor a War Hero and perform for the Pioneer Bar’s Official Guinness Toast.
The Sitka National Cemetery, under 8 inches of snow, was the scenic gathering place to remember Alaskan Native (Tlingit) Roy D. Bailey with Full Military Honors typical for World War II Heroes. Roy’s story of battlefield heroism, wounds, evasion, survival and resulting 50 year long wait for the appropriate accolades is truly amazing. The SFP&D is very thankful for being allowed to play for this great American.
Pioneer Bar , Guinness Toast
Following the Memorial, the Pioneer Bar was packed for a fun filled night celebrating the Great Guinness Toast. The “Toast” was an idea by Guinness for a world record of numbers of people toasting simultaneously, and started in an Irish pub in Pittsburgh, 1993 and now growing annually.
We send special regards to Lisa, Mary and all the others that Donated so much to make this Event possible. We Love Sitka !
Officer Jayme Biendl’s Memorial Service at Comcast Arena on February 12, 2011 exemplifies solidarity of Northwest Pipe Bands.
Seattle Firefighters Pipes and Drums, along with Portland Police Highland Guard, Eastside(King County)Firefighters Pipes and Drums, Snohomish County Firefighters Pipes and Drums, Pierce County FireFighters Pipes & Drums, Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue Pipes & Drums (Oregon), Meridian Firefighters Pipes and Drums (Idaho) and Police Bands from British Columbia came together as a unified Mass Band to honor the 34 year old Corrections Officer slain in the performance of duties at Washington State Penitentiary-Monroe . The afternoon services in Everett’s Comcast Arena, were attended by many thousands of representatives of all Public Safety Agencies in the United States and Canada.
Jayme Biendl will not be forgotten.