The South Orange New Jersey Volunteer Rescue Squad (SORS) will hold a dedication and public open house on Saturday, June 11 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. to celebrate the grand opening of their new EMS Headquarters.
The new state-of-the-art headquarters features an ambulance bay for three ambulances plus a 1st Responder vehicle, training and meeting rooms, a kitchen and bunk rooms. It is located next to the historic South Orange Fire Department on Sloan Street. The headquarters is dedicated in the memory of former squad member Mary L. Connor, who devoted more than 40 years to serving the community before her passing in 2015 at the age of 82.
“Our new building will allow us to once again have a safe, secure and appropriate facility from which to base our operations,” said Dan Cohen, Rescue Squad Captain. “We are grateful to have such amazing community support so that we could reach this goal, complete the rebuilding of our headquarters and be able to better serve our neighbors.”
“Our members handled being displaced for two years extremely well,” said Rescue Squad President Melanie Troncone, “but we are all so excited to finally be back in an appropriate facility and we can’t wait to show the public our new headquarters.”
Established in 1952, the Rescue Squad spent 43 years at their previous location, which did not meet the needs for a modern, growing EMS agency. When the old HQ was demolished to make room for the new Third and Valley real estate redevelopment, this much needed upgrade was planned. Over the past two years, the Rescue Squad has worked to raise money to complete the construction by holding fundraisers, applying for grants and selling engraved bricks and tiles that are now a permanent part of the building.
Through its Neighborhood Assist Program, State Farm donated $25,000 to help support the work of the SORS. “As one of 40 organizations chosen out of 4,000 applicants, the SORS aligns with our commitment to ensure better educated and safe communities” said Jennifer Young of State Farm. She added that “we are happy to support their training programs and know that they will continue to provide great services to the community.”
The event will take place from 11am to 1pm at 62 Sloan Street, South Orange, NJ. There will be speeches and awards presented, with a ribbon cutting followed by an open house for the public to tour the new building and ambulances, as well as activities for children and demonstrations of EMS equipment.
THE SOUTH ORANGE RESCUE SQUAD
The South Orange Rescue Squad is an all volunteer, independent 501(c)(3) EMS organization that provides free 911 emergency medical care and transportation to 41,000 residents of South Orange and Maplewood, NJ and the surrounding communities, including Seton Hall University and the city of Newark. The Rescue Squad receives NO taxpayer funding and is supported solely by contributions from the community which are 100% deductible under IRS regulations. The SORS Cadet program trains high school students to save lives and integrates them into the EMS system. Rescue Squad members teach First Aid and CPR to members of the community, provide free EMS standby coverage at public events, and visit schools, camps and daycares to teach children about safety and Emergency Medical Services.
For the past 64 years SORS has consistently served our community at all hours of the day and night with immediate 911 response and free medical treatment and transportation. They have delivered at least 20 babies, saved hundreds of lives per year and been there when the community needed them all without using taxpayer funds or ever charging a fee for their services. The Rescue Squad saves our residents approximately $1,040,000 per year in medical fees charged by for profit EMS agencies by continuing the mission of never charging for ambulance transportation and treatment.