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The training was presented by local, county and state CD-DC officers, covering every phase of rescue. September 18, 1960 saw Hurricane Donna strike Bergen County, and the Squad was mobilized to assist the Borough and Power Company in removing downed trees from homes and roadways.
The years that followed saw the continued training and response to calls, such as the dramatic accident on June 25, 1961, in which a tractor trailer carrying liquid propane rolled over onto a car trapping its occupants. On May 13, 1975 an extended power failure struck the Borough calling on the Squad’s generators for such needs as powering voting booths and providing light for the confirmation exercises at Our Lady of Visitation Church. In October of 1983, after over a year of debate, bids were received and approved for the construction of the Squads building.
In November of 1990, six members of the Rescue Squad competed in the International Auto Extrication Competition sponsored by the International Association of Fire Chiefs, in Seminole County, Florida. In May 1996 members of Squad competed in the Mid-Atlantic Regional Extrication Competition. The year 2000 marks a new age for the Paramus Rescue Squad, and unfortunately the passing of another. Sadness continued in September of 2004, with the loss of Rescuer William "Jim" Lightbody in a Line of Duty Death.
Water was pumped from flooded basements and rowboats were used on the flooded Saddle River to check on homeowners who needed to be evacuated.


Training included rescue techniques, casualty and simulated emergency operations along with leadership exercises. On July 16 Paramus witnessed natures fury, as a tornado cut through Bergen County, ripping the roofs from homes, and felling trees. With two trucks the Squad had outgrown its tiny building and made its move to share garage space with the Shade Tree Department in the Municipal Complex off Carlough Drive. The Squad placed 15th out of 33 teams, and were congratulated by the Mayor and Council for their achievement. What followed was months of unexpected political debate between the residents of the area, the Squad, and the Borough Council. The older Ford F-700 was worn from the many trips up the hill of Carlough drive and was traded to the County where it now serves as a training truck for the Bergen County EMS Training Center. Almost 39 years to the date of Hurricane Donna the storm produced flooding that damaged hundreds of homes.
Jim had responded to several weather related fire alarms early in the morning, and assisted in an Extrication call on the Garden State Parkway for a car off the roadway, down an embankment. The original mission of the Rescue Squad was to prepare for rescues and survival following an attack of war…We have come a long way. Finally in October of 1982 the Borough Council approved a resolution that would locate the Rescue Squad on the North side of Carlough Drive across from the Police Department.


This allowed the team to compete in the International Competition held in September 1997 in Vancouver, Canada.
Archie remained just as dedicated to the Squad and the Community in his final days as his first days. The driver of one of the Rescue trucks, upon arriving at the garage, noticed Jim slumped over in the passenger seat. After more than a year of work on the part of Petronzio, Paramus was able to obtain approximately $11,000 in matching funds toward the total cost of approximately $33,000. Always mindfully of our neighbors the Rescue Squad also spent several days assisting the surrounding towns such as Rochelle Park, which was particularly hit hard, with over 40% of the town suffering flood damage. The truck is now in daily service to assist in accidents on the heavily traveled State Routes 4 and 17 which bisect Paramus. Jim's memory lives on, and will be preserved in our antique project, a project in which a 1954 Chevrolet Suburban is being restored to look like the first Rescue truck used by Paramus Rescue.




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