It was an excellent conference, except for Tony not being able to start the conference. Things were just not the same without him. Attendance at the Opening Ceremonies was outstanding. The Memorial Service by Olga was thoughtful, as usual. A big thank you goes to John Knoll for assisting during the Service. 30 members have passed away during the year, since last conference. It seems John and Dave Kwiecien made the front page of the Punta Gorda Newspaper, on a photo of the Memorial Service. Keynote Speaker, Tom Brennan was very entertaining. During the General Session it might have seemed that everything was negative, but it actuality things are really very positive. We have increased our membership, more members are getting involved and helping out. Even though the membership of the Death Benefit Fund is low, signs lead toward increasing membership. The Installation and Firefighter of the Year Award Dinner was well planned and we had excellent food and conversation with new and old friends. A collection was made for a new piece of equipment needed for the cutting the grass at the office, in Avon Park. Thanks to all who donated, the prisoners, who cut the grass for us, will surely appreciate it.
On Friday Night many people went on the Cruise, it was fun, even if the getting there was not. Everyone enjoyed the it. Thanks to CW and Bob Amick for getting everything taken care of.
Firematics was a great success thanks to Bob Amick and the Punta Gorda Fire Dept. Christine Kwiecien played the Stars Spangle Banner again this year. Thank you Christine. The Ladies Auxiliary sold popcorn and tickets for their Publix certificate raffle. As for the Firematics teams it was great to see everyone out there but a special mention to Pompano Highlands for finally coming back.