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Sandy first responders deserve gratitude

TimesLedger Newspapers

As our area is still reeling from the savage blows from Hurricane Sandy, we need to mindful of the heroism of our first responders.

They made daring rescues of those trapped by surging tides and roaring winds, and struggled to contain the raging firestorm that engulfed and destroyed more than 100 homes in Breezy Point in the Rockaways.

Our firefighters, police officers, EMTs and other emergency personnel, as well as countless others, braved horrendous conditions to render assistance to those who were in danger during the hurricane. We owe all of these heroes and heroines our grateful gratitude.

When adversity strikes, they always rise to fight against it. Hurricane Sandy, a maelstrom of death and destruction from the tropics, has touched the lives of every person in our tri-state area with various degrees of severity. We hope our federal government will aid this stricken area as quickly as possible and work in tandem with local and state governments to bring relief in the form of restored electrical service, food, shelter and clothing to the thousands of people who have lost their homes and other possessions.

Thousands still remain without power, heat and water, and with temperatures dropping to below 40 degrees at night, conditions will become dangerous for them, especially the elderly, those with life-threatening medical conditions, infants and children.

The landscape of our coastline, from New Jersey to Connecticut, has been changed forever by the hurricane. The storm also has wrought an arbori-cultural disaster, uprooting tens of thousands of trees all across the region, some of which had stood for more than 100 years or more.

But we are tough and will recover and bounce back stronger and better than before.

John Amato

Fresh Meadows

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