Courtesy The Berkshire Eagle
By Dick Lindsay
ADAMS — Around 5:30 p.m. on Sunday, three Adams police cruisers — one playing "We Wish You a Merry Christmas" — and Adams Fire Department Engine 2, pulled up to 13 Cherry St. ready to play Santa's helpers.
The seven police officers and two firefighters, wearing Santa hats, exited their vehicles carrying presents for three young brothers, who otherwise might not get any next Sunday, Dec. 25.
"I'm just happy we can put a smile on their faces," said firefighter Mike Therrien. Paula Fachini fought back tears of joy, smiling as the men in full uniform put gift after gift under the family Christmas tree.
"Mommy, Santa's here," exclaimed three-year-old Chase Woods, as brothers Dominic Woods, 10 months, Alex Messer, 10, looked on.
The scene also played out in North Adams on Saturday with first responders in five other North Berkshire communities this month also participating in the special deliveries of an enhanced Holiday Elf Warm Clothing Program by the Berkshire Community Action Council.
"It's good to get up close and personal with the families," said Adams Police Officer Greg Onorato.
Courtesy of iBerkshires
By Jack Guerino
ADAMS, Mass. — A family in need this season got a visit from some local Santas: the Alert Hose Company.
But rather than by reindeer-drawn sleigh, the gifts arrived by fire truck this past Sunday morning.
Fire Chief Paul Goyette said this year the Fire Department sponsored a family through the Berkshire Community Action Center Elf program.
"They asked us to sponsor a family and instill some Christmas cheer to a local family," he said. "So we purchased some gifts and delivered them to a family."
Goyette said this is the first time the Fire Department has sponsored a family through the Elf program.
The donations also had a secondary purpose he said, because it is important, especially for children, to see firefighters outside of emergencies.
"A lot of the time when a fire truck shows up, it is not for a good reason and this was a good way for us to show that we are just people," he said. "The family had two young boys and we drove up and wanted to show them that we are not only here to protect them but to help out in other ways and spread some cheer and joy."
Goyette said it is important to the Alert Hose Company to give back to the community.
"We are always willing to help out in any situation or when anyone is in need," he said. "We want to give back to the community that has always helped us out."
Courtesy of iBerkshires
By Jack Guerino
ADAMS, Mass. — The Fire Department raised and donated $900 to the Louison House.
The Fire Department held a spaghetti dinner at Bounti-Fare to raise money for the nonprofit family shelter that suffered water and fire damage at its Adams building several months ago.
"The Louison House is a great organization that helps so many homeless people find shelter," firefighter Cory Adelt said. "We believe in their mission and hope the money we raised will get them back open in Adams."
Currently, the Louison House (Family Life Support Center) is operating out of its new North Adams location until repairs can be made.
Louison House Executive Director Kathy Keeser said the donation was a surprise and she thanked the Fire Department and the community for their continued support.
"It was wonderful kind of a surprise really ... they did it on their own initiative to help us out. It's pretty amazing," Keeser said. "They have been so supportive along the way and were our neighbors while we were in Adams. It's just great the amount of community support we have received since the fire."
Keeser said the funds will most likely go toward needs at their North Adams location.
Adelt said the Adams Alerts often tries to help those in need and provide a service to the community beyond fighting fires.
"We believe in our community, and we always respond and help our neighbors during their time of need," he said. "The Alerts proudly support many organizations in our community. Our department and community are very tight-knit ... and we will go above and beyond to help our community."
Adelt thanked all those who attended the fundraiser and for their continued support.
He also invited residents to their open house Saturday, Oct. 15, from 1-4 p.m.