Massachusetts Fire Dept. “We’re in a drought: your tossed cigarette butts will start a fire”

Mulch is a combustible material that can be easily ignited by improperly discarded smoking materials. Hundreds of small and large fires are started this way every year. The risk is that what starts as a small outdoor mulch fire can quickly spread to buildings.

A mulch fire can be well underway before someone notices or is alerted by smoke alarms or sprinkler systems activating.

The most notable mulch fire in Massachusetts occurred in May 2015 in a large Arlington apartment complex. One man died in the fire started by smoking materials discarded in a mulch bed, which then spread to the building. Thirty-six apartments and six cars were destroyed. The building had no sprinklers and the estimated dollar loss was $6.7 million.

In April 2012, improperly discarded smoking materials ignited mulch outside an assisted living center in Braintree. The fire forced many older adults to evacuate in the early morning hours. Several suffered smoke inhalation injuries.

In May 2008, a cigarette ignited a mulch fire at a Peabody apartment complex. It caused $6.7 million in damage to the building, displaced 750 people temporarily and 36 permanently.

“Why would anyone carelessly toss a lit cigarette into mulch?

With our dry weather and fanned by a breeze, the smoldering fire could spread. Be respectful to our neighbors! Help to prevent fires! Thankfully the fire was quickly extinguished.

Go to the link for more info: https://camb.ma/3NeTbpY.” -Cambridge MA Fire Department.

New Bedford native who lost twins to drowning accident, wins “American Chopper” contest

On January 16th, 2010, New Bedford native Paul DeMello lost his 13-month-old twins, Christian and Joshua, in a drowning accident. Joshua died that day and Christian died 3 days later and his parents had his organs donated. The following day, Christian’s liver was donated to a boy named Jose in Texas, and his kidney to 22-year-old Jillian Forgea of Florida – both were life-saving transplants.

“I know God is still moving and if he’s for me who can truly be against me? Jesse never got to meet little Jose from Texas, that got one of our twin angel’s livers, but we can say Jillian Forgea and her baby girl Arabella (answered prayer) and the family have given us the true meaning of the full circle of life when they received my baby boy Christian’s kidney THANK YOU GOD.”, said DeMello. “Ever since that day, I’ve wanted to help people. I was able to flip the script and help others in hopes that no one else has to go through what I went through.”

Paul DeMello photo.

Since the unfortunate and life-changing accident, Paul gained a new perspective on life and has campaigned for causes that will spread awareness about children’s drownings, participates in annual charity bike runs and walk-a-thons, as well as found the organization Just Against Children Drowning which erects life-saving pool fences to stop children from reaching the pool’s edge.

This year Paul participated in a Facebook “Dream Chopper” contest that would award a custom-built motorcycle from Paul Teutul Sr. of Orange County Choppers. The winner would be featured on an episode of the television show “American Chopper. Proceeds from the contest went to a “No Kill” animal shelter the Teutul family supports.

Among 64,000 contestants and against all odds, DeMello won the Facebook contest. He dedicated the win to his twins as well as any and all families who have suffered by losing a child to water-related accidents. The dream chopper will represent “Just Against Children Drowning” and will accompany Paul to all JACD Events including their annual bike run and walk-a-thon.

While we can’t control or stop tragedies happening to us, we can control the response to those tragedies. In the case of Paul Demello he turned a negative life experience into a positive one that has benefitted hundreds and over time will benefit thousands.

Paul DeMello photo.

Paul DeMello photo.

New England Wildlife Center nursing baby skunk, other orphaned baby animals back to health

“Friends it is busy here and we could use your help!

We are in peak baby season and we are taking in more animals by the minute! From skunks, to raccoons, to injured turtles we are working hard to make sure they all get the care they need to make it back to the wild. We we could really use your help to purchase some critical animal care supplies to help us make it through!

Would you share this post and consider sending something? A donation from our wishlist or a contribution of any dollar amount is a huge help!

Just take this little skunk. He came in today weak, dehydrated and covered in fly eggs after he lost his mom. Our vet team worked all morning to clean him up and by this afternoon he was eating formula like a champ! This little guy alone will require over 100 hours of care before he’s ready to return to the wild. By purchasing a care item or making a donation you are helping him and thousands of other animals get a second chance this year.

Thank you so much for your support!

Link to our Amazon Wishlist: https://www.amazon.com/hz/wishlist/ls/2WW4SGSTGNGNG/ref=hz_ls_biz_ex?fbclid=IwAR0GKwDhnplvX_XNggBBDof_xqCxBEwJm4Arj-N36Aj98avVNJULqygBX70
Link to Donate: https://go.payinvoice.com/newildlife/donation/” -New England Wildlife Center.

Massachusetts Center for Coastal Studies team frees entangled humpback whale calf

“On Tuesday, the Center’s Marine Animal Entanglement Response team successfully freed a humpback whale calf with its mother close by in waters off Chatham.

Staff from the Atlantic White Shark Conservancy discovered the whale and called the MAER team. Once on the scene, MAER assessed the entanglement and decided to cut the rope using a long pole and a hook-shaped cutting tool.

An already tricky job was even more fraught by the presence of the calf’s mom with two whales potentially reacting to their presence. But the process went smoothly and MAER removed all the rope from the calf.

Thanks for all your help AWSC!” -Center for Coastal Studies.

Town of Acushnet in active talks with City of New Bedford to make Lake Street improvements

“Please note that the Board of Selectmen are in active conversations with the City of New Bedford, in an effort to gain permission to go forward with the plan to improve Lake Street and remediate the weed situation in the area of the ponds.

As you may already know, the City of New Bedford owns the water rights as well as the parking lots. Chairman for the Board of Selectman, David Wojnar alongside Town Administrator, James Kelley, have personally met with City of New Bedford’s Mayor Jon Mitchell, in an effort to move this along.

Once the City of New Bedford approves the MOU (memorandum of understanding), we will move forward. Thank you for your continued patience, and please note that this remains a top priority for the Board of Selectmen.” -Town of Acushnet.

Massachusetts State Police, local police, search for missing 3-year old boy continues

“The Lowell Police Department is asking the public for assistance as they seek to locate 3-year-old Harry who went missing on Tuesday morning.

On Tuesday, June 14, at about 9:30 a.m., Lowell Police received a report that a 3-year-old boy was missing from a residence on Freda Lane in the Pawtucketville neighborhood.

Officers responded and began an immediate search of the home and surrounding area, quickly expanding the search when the boy was not found.

Lowell Police Department photo.

The Massachusetts State Police and State Police Airwing, Dracut Police, Tyngsborough Police, UMass Lowell Police, and the Regional Response Team and mobile command unit from the Northeastern Massachusetts Law Enforcement Council are assisting in the search. Multiple K-9 units are also assisting.

Lowell Police have used the reverse 911 system to notify residents of the area, and are asking the public to contact police immediately if they believe they have seen the boy or have information on his whereabouts.

Harry was last seen wearing a long-sleeve maroon shirt and gray pants with a white stripe.

Anyone with information on Harry’s whereabouts, or who believes they have seen him, is urged to 911, or to call Lowell Police at 978-937-3200.” -Lowell Police Department.

“Art Is Everywhere” awards $70,000 to New Bedford arts and culture projects

On Friday June 10, 2022 New Bedford Creative introduced the “Art is Everywhere” grant recipients for arts and culture projects in the City of New Bedford this year.

Seven compelling applicants have been selected to share $70,000 in funding to realize their vision and bring their projects to life in the city. This is the third year “Art is Everywhere,” administered by New Bedford Creative on behalf of MassDevelopment and the Barr Foundation, has supported projects that seek to define and enlarge the scope of creativity in the city.

Reflecting an expanding pool of talent and vision, this year four of the seven are first time recipients of New Bedford Creative funding, and six are new to Art is Everywhere. Five are receiving full funding for their projects. Additionally, five represent the impact the city’s Black, Indigenous, and People of Color communities have made and are making today in the city.

“The recipients in this round of the ‘Art is Everywhere’ Grant Program showcase the breadth of what New Bedford’s creative community has to offer,” said Housing and Economic Development Secretary Mike Kennealy, who serves as chair of MassDevelopment’s Board of Directors. “From a bilingual Yoga Series focused on serving underrepresented youth, to honoring the legacy of Frederick Douglass, these projects have the power to catalyze the local arts-based creative economy in a way that creates deep impact in the community.”

New to “Art is Everywhere” this year is Dil ba Dil Rah Dhara (From One Heart to Another): The Afghan Women’s Art Project which will be presented in partnership with the South Coast Afghan Welcome Network (SAWN) and the New Bedford Free Public Library with the support of $11,600.

Meanwhile, La Soul Renaissance will celebrate its 20th anniversary with special programming to celebrate the local Cape Verdean, Black, Indigenous, Caribbean, Immigrant and wider community about the value of the cultural memory at Verdean Veterans Memorial Hall with $13,000.

The bilingual Yoga series, Ease into Summer Kids, will be launched by Tahais Real-Martins of Yoga Es Vida at New Bedford Parks with $6,000. David Andrews and The Communal Space will host Kids Open Art Week with a $3,400 award.

The heritage of New Bedford’s Abolition movement is recognized by two projects. The Massachusetts Design Art, & Technology Institute (known as DATMA) project will use $6,000 to place “Safe Station: New Bedford’s Underground Railroad” at the New Bedford YMCA. And, the New Bedford Historical Society’s Abolition Row Park will dedicate $20,000 towards its Frederick Douglass Memorial at the park.

Finally, the appetizing pairing of food and creativity will be showcased by Coastal Foodshed at farmers markets throughout the city with $10,000 in seed money.

“These projects add to the richness of our shared cultural experiences,” comments Margo Saulnier, Creative Strategist for New Bedford Creative. “Collectively, these ‘Art is Everywhere’ projects propel New Bedford into a more equitable future by expressing the creativity of our entire community.”

The importance of arts and culture in the City of New Bedford is reflected by the “Art is Everywhere” investment and other recent initiatives. In May 2022, Mayor Jon A. Mitchell announced that $1.2 million in American Rescue Plan Act (ARPA) funding was also being made available to support local artists and art-related organizations.

He remarked at the time, “The artists that comprise New Bedford’s thriving arts community are themselves small businesses. (This) represents a timely investment in our economy and will energize our cultural scene.”

The ARPA funds will be awarded later this year through New Bedford Creative’s grant programs – even as “Art is Everywhere” catalyzes the New Bedford cultural landscape. Updates, further information and monthly news about all programs can be found at newbedfordcreative.org.

New Bedford Creative photo.

New Bedford Police participate in “Cruiser Convoy” to raise funds for Special Olympics

“On Saturday, Special Olympics Massachusetts held its annual Summer Games on the campus of Harvard University.

Law enforcement agencies from across the Commonwealth conducted a “Cruiser Convoy” from Danvers to Harvard Stadium to highlight the opening of Saturday’s events and competitions. Law Enforcement is a major sponsor and contributor to Special Olympics, and conducts the Law Enforcement Torch Run each year to raise funds to support the games. Police departments were asked to donate $100 per participating cruiser, with funds going directly to the athletes.

This year’s Convoy netted $17,518 and included officers from the Berkshires to Provincetown, and the North Shore to New Bedford.

Officer Julianna King with K9 Freya, and Special Sheriff William Gerke represented the ECSD. Over 230 cruisers participated in the Convoy, after which officers visited with athletes and their families, and participated with the presentation of award medals at event ceremonies.

Officer King and Special Sheriff Gerke were honored to present medals in track and field.” -Essex County Sheriff’s Department.

Video by the Lawrence Police Department:

All photos by the Essex County Sheriff’s Department:

Massachusetts Police Dept. receives “Manny Tubes” in honor of 14-year old boy, officer who drowned

“On Friday, June 4th, 2021, Worcester Police Officer Manny Familia responded to a 9-1-1 call for a drowning 14-year-old boy, Troy Love, in Green Hill Pond, Worcester.

Unfortunately, Officer Familia and Troy Love did not make it out of the water alive.

The Manny 267 Foundation was created by Officer Familia’s family to spread awareness of the hazards of drowning and how essential it is for first responders and the community to know how to swim safely.

On Friday, Officer Familia’s brother, Elvin, and his niece Alani, representing the Manny 267 Foundation, donated ten “Manny Tubes” – bright yellow flotation devices for use by first responders during water rescues, to the Salem Police Department. The Department will keep the Manny Tubes in cruisers for rapid deployment when officers are called to respond to incidents on the water.

For information on the Manny 267 Foundation, see: http://267foundation.org/” -Salem MA Police.

Officer Familia’s brother, Elvin, and his niece Alani. Salem MA Police Department photo.

Worcester Police Officer Manny Familia who lost his life trying to save 14-year old Troy Love. Salem MA Police Department photo.

Officer Familia’s brother, Elvin, and his niece Alani. Salem MA Police Department photo.

Salem MA Police Department photo.

Massachusetts State Police “Pink Cruiser” hits road in support, solidarity for cancer survivors

“If you’re driving on the Mass Pike over the next couple of weeks, you might notice a colorful sight on the westbound side.

As our Pink Cruiser continues to make its way around the Commonwealth, it’s currently parked at our State Police-Weston Barracks.

The cruiser is a symbol of support and solidarity for all who have fought, and continue to fight, breast cancer and all types of cancer. We hope you take notice if you find yourself passing by.” -Massachusetts State Police.

Massachusetts State Police photo.

Massachusetts State Police photo.

Massachusetts State Police photo.

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