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North Salem’s Kurt Guldan Gets Congressional Commendation

NORTH SALEM, N.Y. – Kurt Guldan, North Salem’s Emergency Management (OEM) coordinator, is on deck to be honored by Congresswoman Nan Hayworth for his outstanding valor and service to the community.

Last year brought unusual trials and challenges to Westchester’s first responders, Hayworth said, adding that they are our first line of defense for homeland security, as well. Such people put themselves at risk every day, and deserve recognition for their courage, their valor and their selflessness, continued Hayworth, a Republican, who represents the state's 19th District.

Guldan, 32, has been a volunteer fireman since the age of 16 – in other words, half his life. He was one of the first responders at the 9/11 site in 2001. As President of the North Salem Volunteer Ambulance Corps, he is on call every day.

“Kurt knows exactly what needs to be done and where the resources exist to help," Supervisor Warren Lucas said. "He’s spent many years working within the Westchester County Emergency Medical Service, and the Town of North Salem is lucky to have him.”

Guldan explained himself simply: “I enjoy working with the community and I enjoy helping people.”

Why was North Salem so well prepared to deal with the crises of Hurricane Irene and the October snowstorm? “The OEM did a good job of planning,” Guldan said. “It didn’t happen with me by myself ... It was a group effort.”

Residents who had occasion to spend time at the Ambulance Corps building during the power outages can testify to the good work of the OEM and the Ambulance Corps. Out-of-towner Patricia O’Neill was driving on I-684 when Irene slammed into North Salem. She heard on the radio that there was an Ambulance Corps shelter off Exit 8.

“I went there and knocked on the door,” she said. “The man who answered said, ‘Are you driving? Come in and make yourself at home.’”

The man was Kurt Guldan. O’Neill ended up staying for three days. “Everyone was wonderful,” she said. “What a sense of safety and security.”

Guldan will receive his Congressional Commendation along with other honorees from the area on Wednesday, May 23 at the Putnam County Emergency Operations Center. The formal presentation begins at 6:30 p.m.

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