American Legion Grants Haverhill Police Wish for All-Terrain Rescue Vehicle

Haverhill Police Chief Alan R. DeNaro accepts $20,000 donation from American Legion Commander Paul Blinn. (WHAV News photograph.)

Haverhill Police Chief Alan R. DeNaro’s longtime wish for an all-terrain rescue vehicle was granted Friday by a $20,000 donation from members of American Legion Wilbur M. Comeau Post 4.

At a ceremony at the police station last Friday afternoon, the police chief explains why the donation is so important.

An example of the type of all-terrain rescue vehicle the Haverhill Police Department will buy with the American Legion grant. (Courtesy photograph.)

“An important item that we need, that we can’t seem to find the finding for, is a gator, which is like an ATV vehicle that we can attach a basket to for injured people. We can also use it in our wooded areas. We can use it on our jogging track, the city’s rail trail. We can use it on the boardwalk when that goes through from bridge to bridge for patrols. It can be used during festivals and things of that nature—it is very difficult to get a vehicle through,” DeNaro explains.

During an apartment building fire at Forest Acres several years ago, DeNaro says, police had to borrow vehicles when the fire began “leapfrogging” across the field.

American Legion Commander Paul Blinn said the organization’s charter calls for members to help the community, children and veterans. When members learned of the need, they jumped into action. “Just put it out to the membership and make it work. Well, they make it happen. That’s what we’re here for,” Blinn says.

The effort was aided by the Sons of the American Legion—an affiliate comprised of descendants of people who served in the U.S. Armed Forces. One of those sons, Fred Simmons, and other members were on hand to make the presentation of the ceremonial $20,000 check.

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