February 2018

January 31, 2018

Los Angeles Firemen’s Relief Association,

I’m Camille Sander. I raised $302 for the Windows and Orphans Firemen’s Fund. My dad is a fireman and has earned the Medal of Valor. I’m 11-years old, and I’m from Oak Park, California. I believe that everyone deserves to be recognized in times of need. Please accept my donation. I have earned this money by having a lemonade stand, selling bracelets that I made, as well as selling homemade cookies. I care deeply about firefighters that have been hurt, as well as their families who are in need. We are all one big family and all need each other’s support and hearts. I have worked for three years to earn this money for those who are hurt and can be healed. My father, Dave Sander is my biggest inspiration and he has been captain of 104’s for a while now. He is a 25-year veteran, and he’s my hero. Thank you to all the hard workers out there who risk their lives for others, each and every day!

Camille Sander
Oak Park, CA

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Dear Andy and LAFRA

Thank you so much for your invaluable help after Gary’s death. We are so thankful for all that you did-advice, funeral plot, flowers and the piper. It is wonderful to be a part of the “Fire Family.” Merry Christmas and Happy New Years! Thanks for all you have done for me and my family and all the others you help as well.

Mary Nelson

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Dear Bob,

Please accept this donation to the Windows and Orphans Fund in appreciation for the work done by retired Fire Pension Commissioner, Sam Diannitto. Sam put in 42-years of dedicated service as a Pension Commissioner, protecting and enhancing the pension benefits enjoyed by all members of the Los Angeles Fire and Police Pension System. It was an honor to work for him in Division 2 and with him on pension issues.

Thank you,

Ken Buzzell
San Pedro, California

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LAFRA-

Captain Ben [Dennis Benkovsky] was certainly one of a kind. A captain you can put faith in. From his antics as “Medical Man” to his on-scene actions, he will always be remembered in a great light. Thanks for all the great times and memories. Rest in peace, my friend.

Tony Valdez

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LAFRA-

Captain Ben and I were reliefs at Fire Station 94 back in the early 1990’s. He was a pleasure to work around always. He never took himself too seriously but was an excellent Fire Captain both at emergency incidents and around the Engine House. His crew loved him and would follow him anywhere. My condolences to Dennis’ Family. Rest in Peace Captain Ben.

Robert McMaster

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LAFRA-

Where do I start? Don Betsworth was one of a kind. “Yosemite Sam.” The Betsworth high pour (pouring coffee into a mug from quite the distance). Trivial pursuit expert and “I don’t eat anything that sh**’s through feathers, except Mrs. B’s fried chicken.” He was one of a kind. Thanks for the good times and great memories.

Jim Polzer

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LAFRA-

I had the pleasure of working with Bob [Duncan] at old 72’s. He was a top-notch, no- nonsense fireman who knew his job backwards and forwards. A real asset to the LAFD.

Vince Marzo

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LAFRA-

Keith Stewart – My Brother. Met you and worked with you at FS 37 when you were a boot ass. You were confident but not cocky. I knew then that you would excel at anything you did. It was an honor and privilege to know you and work around you. We always met with smiles and a big Hug. I love you Brother. Rest In Peace

Taylor Gaskins

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LAFRA-

I will ALWAYS remember you K$!!! Loved working with you bro, when you were an Engineer at 79’s, than you promoted to become my skipper at 65’s!!!! Always level headed and down to earth. You were a Great Firefighter/Captain, and I would not be worried about going into any fire with you! You always had my back, as I yours. Now you are an Angel looking down upon us, as we go out to do the work you so dearly loved. Keep your wings spread on your ascent to heaven brother, for with those wings and the mighty hand of God may you watch over us!!! Until we meet again Keith Stewart . . .

Daniel Stark

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LAFRA-

Loth [Westerman] and I began our friendship as engineer study partners in the early 1970’s. We both made it off that list, and remained friends all these years. We graduated from Canoga Park High School in 1951. I will miss him a lot.

Bill Carter

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Widows, Orphans & Disabled Firemen’s Fund-

As this year comes to a close, I reflect back on all those that we have lost this year. I think a lot about those from the “Greatest Generation” that were my mentors when I first came on the job. Their training involved little verbiage and lots of hands on. That generation went through the depression, a world war, and never complained. They were dedicated to the job, and did an outstanding job.

Please accept this donation on behalf of all those members we have lost.

Best regards,
Bill & Pam Finn

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Dear Bob & Andy-

I want to thank you and the Executive Board & Staff for the commitment and dedication to all our members—both active and retired. As you well know, just because you are retired doesn’t mean you stop serving and helping others. As I look back on how fortunate I was to have a 43-year career on the LAFD. I continued my involvement as Vice President of The Los Angeles Retired Fire & Police Association and a volunteer with our LAFD Historical Society, This year, as in past, I’m making a donation to the WODFF in lieu of a gift exchange with LAFRA Ex-Board members and in remembrance of my good friend, teacher and mentor, Chief Allen (Bruno) Brunacini-retired Fire Chief of the Phoenix F.D. He was the “Finest Man” to ever wear a gold badge and grace the fire service with his far-reaching leadership skills and fire ground teaching. His motto for PFD was “Be Nice.” What an outstanding human being and example he was. Rest easy Old Friend. We won’t forget you and your contributions to the fire service.

With respect and great admiration. I’m a better man having known you “Bruno!”
Don Forrest

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LAFRA-

Wishing you and your staff a “Happy Holiday Season.” Enclosed is a holiday contribution for the Windows, Orphans & Disabled Firemen’s Fund, in appreciation for your dedication and in loving memory of John and others.

Sincerely,
Fumiko Humberd

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