It was an emergency that damaged the property of thousands, including those whose job it is to respond in an emergency.
"Being in an emergency and going to an emergency yeah it's kind of an oxymoron. I realize that but again, when it happened, we could not stop," said Scullville Chief Michael Fiedor. "Right now we're over 500,000 dollars in loss. That's half a million dollars. That's a lot of money for a fire company."
By the time Hurricane Sandy made landfall, the Scullville Fire Department was already 3 feet under water, and as waves threatened to cave in the front of the firehouse, those left on duty were faced with a difficult decision.
"When the water was buckling the doors, I told the guys to open the doors so it didn't rip the doors completely off tracks of the hinges," said Assistant Chief John Webb. "It was pure shock. Something we never saw before. We never expected that kind of water to come up into here. So yeah it just... kind of melted your heart."
But even as they faced significant damages of their own, they remained focused on keeping their neighbors safe.
"With all that going on, we never missed a beat. We did what we could because the Egg Harbor Township people and the people living in Scullville depend on us," said Chief Fiedor.
"They came over to ask if I was alright. They asked me if I needed help. They kept checking on me, they kept checking on other neighbors, they were fantastic," said Patricia Pacheco, who lives across from the station.
A year later the firehouse is 90% back to normal, but the damage has had a lasting impact.
"With us not having a hall rental for the past year, we've lost out on that revenue," said the Chief.
But now the hall is back open for business, and Chief Fiedor gives that credit to the community.
"The people were great. Envelopes, best wishes, facebook, anything they could get into us anything we need just call em up and they'd be here," said Fiedor. "I just thank everybody in Egg Harbor Township, Atlantic County for all their help, their support, their wishes their prayers"
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