Camden Fire Department
Rescue Company

Rescue Company 1 was organized on June 28, 1951 and entered service on that date at Fire Headquarters, 29 North 5th Street at the corner of North 5th and Arch Street in center city Camden. In 1961 the unit relocated to the new headquarters, a converted factory building that had once been the home of the Camden Courier-Post newspaper at 3 North 3rd Street, the corner of North 3rd and Arch Street. On November7, 1978 Rescue 1 moved across the street to the new Fire Headquarters building at 2 North 3rd Street. In 1993 Rescue Company again moved, this time to 619 Kaighn Avenue, the former home of Ladder Company 2 in South Camden, where it shared the building with the Fire Department Property Maintenance Unit. On December 7, 1998 Rescue Company 1 moved to its present location at the Liberty Station at 1301 Broadway, the corner of Broadway and Liberty Street.

RESCUE Company 1

1951 GMC


1951 GMC

June 14, 1952

1951 GMC


1954 Diamond Reo

This vehicle entered service in 1956 and remained in use until December 9. 1967, when it was involved in an accident, where the driver, Fireman Ernest Tartaglia,  was killed.


1954 Diamond Reo

This vehicle entered service in 1956 and remained in use until December 9, 1967, when it was involved in an accident, where the driver, Fireman Ernest Tartaglia,  was killed.


1954 Diamond Reo

Click Here for Supersized View


1954 Diamond Reo

July 1960

1954 Diamond Reo

Click Here for Supersized View

Mid 1960s

1954 Diamond Reo


1969 Chevy Swab


1992 Ford Saulsbury


1992 Ford Saulsbury

Early 1990s

1992 Ford Saulsbury


Captain Paul Escher, 
Firefighter Denny Penn
Firefighter Michael Harper
Firefighter Stephen Kinky


Liberty Station
1301 Broadway


Liberty Station
1301 Broadway


Rescue 1 and others at work

7th Street & Morgan Boulevard

Joel Bain in the foreground



Rescue 1 and Engine 11
aiding pregnant woman trapped in car

State Street & Harrison Avenue
Cramer Hill

At far right:
Captain William Huelas
Battalion Chief Joseph Rotchford

February 1993

Point Street & Erie Street,
North Camden

Warren Everett
Joel Bain
Captain Dennis Hillman

April 10, 1993

Rescue 1 at work

Bowling alley Fire
2600 Mount Ephraim Avenue

Joel Bain in the foreground

June 24, 1994

Rescue 1
500 Block of Benson Street


February 1996

Joel Bain

November 4, 1996

December 23, 2001

Joel Bain

Be Sure to Click on Images for Enlarged Views

Camden Courier-Post - August 6, 1941

Rescue Company 1 - South 4th Street - Central School - Farnham Park - Robert Spinozzi

Woman Gas Victim Saved by Camden Rescue Squad

The hour-long effort of a fire department rescue squad Friday night saved a woman who tried to kill herself by gas.

Police said Mrs. Florence Marshall, 46, of 330 North Tenth Street, locked herself in the bathroom and turned on a gas jet. They added she was despondent because her daughter, Eva, 22, was planning to marry and leave

A son, William, 19, broke down the bathroom door and dragged the mother from the room. Patrolmen John Voll and Harrison Wilkinson were called and summoned the rescue squad headed by Captains Godfrey Patterson and George Boone.

It took the squad an hour to revive Mrs. Marshall by artificial respiration. She was taken to Cooper hospital and later to police headquarters, where she was released for a hearing Monday on a charge of attempted suicide.

Other members of Rescue Squad 1 are George Baxter, William Watkin, John Mogck, Edward Brendllnger, Arthur Ballinghoff, Christopher Moll, Edwin Decker, Carl Wirtz, Robert Olesiewicz, John Kolessar and Raymond Banford.

Camden Courier-Post
February 16, 1952

Camden Courier-Post
September 5, 1952

Rudolph G. Trautman
Dr. Gabriel Najera


Camden Courier-Post * August 19, 1957

Firemen Here Get Advanced First Aid Course

More than 40 members of the Camden Fire Department have completed the Red Cross course in advanced first aid according to announcement today by Howard F. Keller, Collingswood, chairman of the Camden County Chapter's first aid committee. 

Instruction sessions were under the direction of Fire Chief William V. Pfefferle, Drillmaster Anthony Dzinski, a member of the local chapter first aid group, assisted by Nicholas E. George, were instructors. Dzinski is a member of the Red Cross faculty at the National Aquatic School held in this area each year for instruction in advance safety techniques. Dick Harris, director of Red Cross safety services, supervised.

All members of the graduating class are personnel of several units housed at fire department headquarters here. These include the Headquarters Company, Engine Company 2, Rescue Squad 1 and Truck Company 1. These groups include: 

Rescue Squad: Captains Arthur Batten, Philip A. Stinger and Albert Weller; Edward Brendlinger, Harrison MacNier, Robert Olesiewicz and James W. Smith.

Headquarters Company: Raymond Banford, John K. Voll and John W. Yates.

Truck Company 1: Captains Daniel Jiannetto, Robert E. Dukes and Otto V. Kaiser; William Watkin, Chester Gedrlch, George Baxter, John Mogck, George C. Hennessy, Charles Devlin, Ambrose W. Faust, Joseph McTaggart, Howard R. Taggart, William G. Winstanley and Elmer Johnson Jr.

Engine Company 2: Captains James R. Asher, Thomas Winstanley; Carl Wirtz, James McGrory, Edwin V. Decker, James Stewart, Francis X. McTaggart, Anthony T. Orme, Mario D. Fattore, James O. Jones, Francis P. Stibi, William Hopkins, Robert E. Briggs, John Guiliano, Casper Martelli, Harold H. Pike, John J. Vane, William Stibi, John DiMaggio and Harry Kleinfelder.

July 18, 1960

 An industrial accident with a fatality, at the Cooper River at Baird Avenue. A Front end loader flipped off embankment pinning the operator underwater. 

In the foreground without shirt: Battalion Chief William Deitz, 2nd Battalion, who first arrived at scene and attempted rescue of operator. Members of Rescue Company 1 are Fireman Edward Brendlinger (kneeling on the machine's wheel) and Firemen John Mogck Jr. and James McGrory in the boat. Battalion Chief Deitz would later be killed in the line of duty and Fireman John Mogck would become Chief of Department.

Camden Courier-Post
May 11, 1962

Eugene Thornton
Gary Auxer
John Barry Kelley
Nicholas Pavlak - Peter Yecco
James Anderson -
Albert Weller
Winfield Myers - John Kolessar
Rescue Company 1 - Engine Company 6
Dr. Gerald E. Vanston -
William Passwater -
Mt. Ephraim Avenue
Albert Thornton - Emma Thrornton
Sewell School - Cooper School
Pyne Poynt Junior High
Albert Thornton - Jacob Thornton
Diane Thornton - Carl Thornton
Geraldine Thornton - Cynthia Thornton
North 9th Street - Birch Street - Erie Street

Click on Image to Enlarge


Members of Rescue Company 1 administers oxygen and first aid following the  rescue of several juveniles trapped up to their waist on the Cooper River mudflats at North 10th Street and State Street.

Standing: Joseph Arensberg - Spencer Smith III - Thomas Stammerjohann
Kneeling: unknown policeman - Robert Olesiewicz - Ernest Tartaglia (wearing jacket) - Anthony Orme

2419 Arnold Street - April 20, 2005

A reported dwelling fire with a report on an infant trapped was dispatched in Camden City at 0042 hrs.  Engine 10, Squad 7, Engine 8, Ladder 2, Rescue 1, and Battalion 1 responded to 2419 Arnold Street.  Camden County Radio advised crews a neighbor reported that an infant was still inside on the 2nd floor.  Engine 10 arrived on location with heavy fire showing from division 2 of a 2 story middle of the row occupied dwelling.  Battalion 1 arrived and struck the all hands.  Battalion 1 also requested another engine and ladder crew.  Rescue 1 arrived and searched the dwelling with negative results.    Secondary searches also were negative.  Crews contained the fire to 1 unit with no exposure damage.  The cause of the blaze is under investigation by the Camden Fire Marshals. 

Story and Photo: Ted Aurig



Rescue 1



Rescue Company 1
Unit Patch

Spring 1995 - Following dedication for unveiling of new unit logo, members of Rescue Company 1 pose at front of quarters with apparatus (from left) F.F. Mike DiPascale; Captain Paul Escher; F.F. Dennis Penn; Chief of Department Kenneth Penn; Ms. Jessica Gonzalez-Joseph, Campbell Corporate Manager; Mr. Bill Wright, Campbell Corporate Supervisor; F.F. Steve Kinky; and F.F.
Mike Harper.

Capt. Pat O' Keefe, Dave Dilks, Ron Angemi, & Joel Bain.
Rescue Company 1, On the Streets of Camden - Circa 1997
Bob Bartosz

620 Sycamore Street - June 17, 2006
Story and Photo: Bob Bartosz

Busy 24 Hours in Camden NJ - 6 Working Fires along with  a Rescue

Camden Firefighters  had  a Busy 24 hour tour  starting on June 16th and ending on June 17th with Four All Hands Fire and  Two  second alarms all in the South Camden section of the city. 

The first job was a working fire in a row of two story dwellings in the 1200 block Morton Street.  Later that day they had a working fire in the middle of a row of two story dwellings in the 700 block of Spruce Street a few hours latter in the am hours they were call to the 700 block of Cherry Street

First in companies found heavy fire show in a large 3 story brick dwelling that put  all companies to work with in minutes part of the  structure collapsed  Battalion 1 called for a second alarm. A few minutes latter while to fire was going another alarm came in for a working fire at 908  Haddon Avenue, about 6 blocks away. 

As the companies were coming in they found another blaze a block away from the first job, in a row of 2 story dwellings  at 903 Haddon Avenue. 

Fire Radio put in a Special call to Camden County Fire Units to respond into the City, Fire Companies from Gloucester City, Oaklyn, Westmont, Collingswood, Pennsauken Township were put to work fight these blazes. By 4:30 AM all the fires were placed under control. 

A few hours later Firefighters were dispatched to 620 Sycamore Street for an Explosion and Fire with reports of people trapped. Engine 8 was first in with  Captain Dan Baker. He reported he had the end of a row brick 2 story dwelling that had exploded  and had numerous people injured and one  victim still  trapped on  the collapsed second floor and  he requested the Second Alarm to be transmitted. 

Rescue 1 was arriving with Captain Frank Sandrock and Battalion 1  Chief  Daryl Lewison along with Squad 7 and Engine 1 and Ladder Companies 2 and 1  and Battalion Chief 2 Mike Dipascale on the second alarm with Engine Companies 6 and 9, Ladder 3 and Special Operations Rescue  unit and Car 3 with Deputy Chief Mike Harper  and Chief of Department Joseph Marini in Car 1. 

Firefighters could hear a female calling for help from the collapsed  second floor.

Firefighters went to work shoring up the collapsed building.  Captain Sandrock of Rescue 1 was OPS Officer. About 30 minutes later firefighters were able to get to the badly injured woman. She had burns over 70 percent of her body. Rescue 1 firefighter Eli Hall was sent up the ladder  to bring her down. Camden EMS removed her to Cooper Hospital Trauma. 

Two other males were blown out of the second floor of the building onto the street and were taken to the hospital by Camden  EMS. Two of the victims were admitted in critical condition. Car 3 Harper place the assignment control. 

The explosion is under investigation by the Camden Fire Marshal Office and Camden Police Arson Unit along with the ATF.

Cherry Hill Twp Canteen Unit RIT team and Rehab Unit, and County Fire Police and Camden County Field Com units were Special called. This was a Busy 24 hours with 4 All Hands and 2 second alarm fire and a life saving rescue.


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Mother Delivers Triplets at Camden NJ Fire Station
Story & photos by Bob Bartosz, Camden Fire Department Photographer
September 11, 2007

September 2007 has started out to be a busy month for members of the Camden City NJ Fire Department.  Especially Rescue Company 1.  You never know when the unusual is going to happen.  Within the last few days they were called to a construction accident with a construction worker being injured on a eight story high rise building under construction, extrication on the North-South Freeway, person with his leg caught in a piece of machinery and numerous working dwelling fires in which fire fighters have to search for possible victims trapped and still the unusual was about to happen.   

Group 4 was working a 24 hour tour and Captain Ed Glassman was in his office finishing up his fire reports for the day.  Fire fighter Joe Cunningham was working the Watch Desk. Fire fighters Eddie Frontado, Mike Miller and Mike Labar were on the apparatus floor checking equipment because they just came back from a working dwelling fire.  Fire fighter Labar was about to close the apparatus doors when a pregnant female came walking into the fire station, he took one look at her and knew that she was about to deliver.  

He called to fire fighter Cunningham to announce on the P.A. System for all members of Rescue 1 to report to the apparatus floor for a medical emergency.  Fire fighters assisted her to the rear of the station and Captain Glassman had fire fighters Miller and Frontado to gather up some clean towels, as fire fighter Labar was able to find a large cardboard box so she could be placed instead of laying on the bare apparatus floor.  

That was all the Rescue 1 members could do for her at the present time.  She was no stranger to the fire fighters at Liberty Street Station especially to fire fighter Danny Stratton of three group, he was off duty at the time. He especially took care of her making sure she had plenty of food to eat and as you can see by the photos, she is Smokey the fire house cat. She is an unofficial member just a neighborhood stray and a city cat who would stop by for a free handout. Fire fighters did all the could for her at the present time by making things comfortable and giving her a safe place to stay for the delivery.  Later on that morning fire fighter Labar looked in on her to check how things were going and saw that she had given birth to four kittens,  unfortunately one had died. She was given cat food and milk and is presently still in her back corner of the Liberty Street Station taking care of her remaining three kittens. Fire fighters hope that someone will adopt them and possibly give Smokey a better environment to grow up instead walking the city streets of Camden. 

Photo 1    Fire fighter Mike Labar of Rescue Co. 1 checking on Smokey and her new arrivals.

Photos 2, 3, 4    Smokey with her kittens at Rescue 1 Station in Camden NJ.

Photo 5    Smokey's friend, fire fighter Dan Stratton of Rescue 1 stopping by for a visit.


Click on Images for Enlarged and High Resolution Views

617-619 Bailey Street - December 13, 2007
photographs by Bob Bartosz

Camden NJ Fire Fighter Battle Smokey 2 Alarm Blaze

Shortly after 1:00 PM on December 13, 2007 a police car on patrol spotted heavy smoke coming from a row of vacant dwellings in the 600 block of Bailey Street in the North Camden section of the city.  At the same time Camden Country Fire Radio and Camden Police 911 Center were receiving calls for the same fire location.  Companies were now dispatched along with Battalion 2 Chief Mike DiPascale.  Fire Radio informed Battalion 2 that they were receiving numerous calls and were adding the extra Engine Company to the Box.  

Engine Company 6, under the Command of Captain Sandrock was first on location and reported that he had a row of two story vacant dwellings with the first two dwellings heavily involved and that he was going in service.  Battalion 2 was now on location and informed Fire Radio to strike an All Hands Box and requested an additional Engine and Ladder Company to be dispatched.  

It was a rainy, misty day and the smoke was so heavy that fire fighters had a hard time trying to see up the street to where the fire was located. All of the dwellings were heavily boarded up, making it extremely hard for the fire fighters to make entry.  Truck Companies went up to the roof to ventilate.  Six 1-3/4" lines were now in service as fire fighters were making good progress attacking the fire.  They were able to contain the blaze to two dwellings with some damage to the third dwelling.  About 40 minutes into the fire Chief DiPascale placed the fire Under Control.  The fire is being investigated by the Camden City Fire Marshal's Office and the Camden Police Department Arson Squad.


Members of Engine Company 6, commanded by Captain Sandrock, going into 617 Bailey Street
Members of Ladder Company 3
in the command of Captain Andy Magee heading to the roof to ventilate
Click on Image to Enlarge

617-619 Bailey Street - December 13, 2007

Smoke was so heavy that the fire fighters had a hard time seeing up the street.
Members of Ladder Company 1 led Captain Merklein  and Rescue Company 1
under Captain Glassman  making entry to the heavily boarded up dwellings.   
Fire fighters force their way through heavy smoke to attack the blaze.
Fire fighter used a chainsaw to cut through the boarded-up door

Liberty Street Station -  July 6, 2010
Click on Images to Enlarge
Battalion Chief Donald Johnson
Battalion Chief Donald Johnson
Captain Edward Stratton

Firefighter Gabe Angemi

Firefighter Johnnie Broadwater

Firefighter Chris Broccoli

Not Pictured: Firefighter Ed Frontado

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September 17, 2010

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Firefighter Kenneth L. White, Captain Herbert C. Leary, Firefighter Orlando Nunez

Many of the photographs on this website are from the limited edition book "Fire Department Camden NJ 125 Anniversary 1869-1994" and were taken by Department Photographer Bob Bartosz. Others are courtesy of Joel Bain of the Camden Fire Department. More recent photos are by Gabe Angemi and Phil Cohen.

Be sure to visit Rescue Company 1's excellent "unofficial" web-page, an excellent site with much information about the Camden Fire Department.