Monday, March 11, 2019




Community rallies behind firefighter in need

Ercole family (recent photo courtesy James Gagliardo)

PATTERSON – Thousands of pancakes were prepared Sunday and served to more than 600 people who visited the Patterson Recreation Center to raise funds for Putnam Lake Deputy Fire Chief Mike Ercole and his family.

Ercole, a past president of the fire department, suffered a medical emergency last month resulting in his hospitalization at Yale New Haven Hospital in Connecticut.

Deputy Chief James Gagliardo told the large gathering Ercole was recently transferred from the hospital’s Intensive Care Unit into a regular room where he is being treated daily by physical therapists and other rehabilitation professionals. “Mike’s fight is not over. He has a long road to recovery in front of him and his immediate family in addition to his family in the fire service asks that you keep Mike in your prayers.”

The Mike Ercole Relief Fund received a large infusion of money thanks to those who attended the breakfast. Despite Sunday’s early morning snow, sleet and rain, lines for pancakes were out the door.

Gagliardo called it “amazing to see such an outpouring of love and support from the entire county. We at the Putnam Lake FD can never thank the community enough for assisting us in picking up one of our own. A special thanks to our many sponsors and for the donations of food and supplies that aided in making the event a huge success.”

Sheriff Robert Langley was one of those attending. “I never saw such a turnout for a fundraising breakfast like this. People in Putnam are very special for opening their hearts and pocketbooks for a family in need.”

Gagliardo described his brother chief as the “head of his household with his wife Danielle and four children.”

Those unable to attend the breakfast but desiring to assist financially may send a check to the Putnam Lake FD Benevolent Association–Mike Ercole Relief Fund in care of the Putnam Lake FD, 72 Fairfield Drive, Patterson, NY 12563.


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