MORRIS FREEHOLDERS & SHERIFF HONOR WHIPPANY TRIO FOR LIFE-SAVING FIRE RESCUES

Three Hanover Township residents, Andy Mottram, Kevin Bauer and Frank DeMaio, were honored last night by the Morris County Board of Freeholders for the life-saving rescues of the husband and wife owners of an iconic Whippany restaurant and tavern that went up in flames in late 2017.  The three heroes saw the flames and smoke pouring out of Billy & Madeline’s Red Room Tavern during the early afternoon of Nov. 27, 2017, stopped their cars and ran to the scene.

Andy Mottram and Kevin Bauer worked as a team to bring Madeline Fornaro from a smoke-filled second floor bedroom to safety.

Frank DeMaio, a former Hanover firefighter, broke through the main door of the tavern and was able to locate Billy Fornaro and bring him out safely.

All three men declined to be called heroes: “We did what probably anyone would have done,’’ said Bauer.

But in presenting county resolutions of thanks to each of the men at a ceremony in Morristown, Freeholder Director Doug Cabana said the following:  “A hero is defined as a person who, in the face of danger, combats adversity through ingenuity, bravery or strength, sacrificing his own personal concerns or safety for a greater good or to help others who are in need.”

“The actions of Frank DeMaio, Kevin Bauman and Andy Mottram, on Nov. 27, 2017, certainly fit that definition. The residents of Hanover Township and Morris County thank them for their actions.”

“On behalf of the Board of Chosen Freeholders and Sheriff Jim Gannon, we issue these county resolutions to you for your swift and courageous actions without regard to your own personal safety, and thank you for being role models for all residents of our county.’’

Joining the freeholders in honoring the trio were Morris County Sheriff James M. Gannon, Whippany Fire Department Chief Joe Cortright, Hanover Mayor Ron Francioli, and Hanover Committeeman Thomas “Ace” Gallagher.

Cortright lauded Mottram, Bauer and DeMaio for their good Samaritan efforts, saying their quick and responsive action — several minutes before firefighters arrived -– saved the lives of tavern owners Billy and Madeline, who are both near or over age 80.

While driving on the afternoon of Nov. 27, 2017, Mottram and Bauer (together in one vehicle) and DeMaio (in a second vehicle) observed the fire at Billy & Madeline’s.  All three ran to the fiery and smoky building to see if they could help.

Bauer, raised on his shoulders by the much taller Mottram, was able to climb onto the roof and help Madeline Fornaro out of a second story window. DeMaio, meanwhile, broke the glass on the tavern door to get into the burning building and located Billy Fornaro.

 

Morris County Sheriff Warns of more Phone Scams

A long running phone scam seeking payment for false warrants, overdue IRS payments and non-appearance for jury duty has surfaced again.  This time, the caller poses as a Sheriff’s Officer, provides a name and threatens arrest if no payment is made.  A false callback number is provided for residents to provide the pre-paid debit or Green Dot card number.

Crime Prevention Tips to Help Avoid Falling Victim to this Scam:

  • Legitimate law enforcement agencies will not tell people to provide money card information to avoid arrest.
  • Be suspicious of callers who demand immediate payment for any reason.
  • Never give out personal or financial information to anyone who emails or calls you unsolicited.
  • Never wire money, provide debt or credit card numbers or Green Dot Money Pak card numbers to someone you do not know.
  • Remember that anyone who has the number on a Green Dot Money Pak card, has access to the funds on the card.
  • If you have received a phone scam call, try to gather names, the phone number and location given, and report it to your local police.

SHERIFF GANNON APPPOINTED TO GREYSTONE BOARD OF TRUSTEES

Sheriff Gannon posed for photo in a suit.
Sheriff James M. Gannon
Morris County’s 77th Sheriff

PART OF MAJOR SHAKEUP OF GREYSTONE REVIEW BOARD BY GOV. CHRISTIE

Morris County Sheriff James M. Gannon has been appointed by Gov. Chris Christie to the Greystone Park Psychiatric Hospital Board of Trustees, as part of a complete overhaul of the state hospital’s review board.

“I take this appointment very seriously and plan to work very hard on behalf of the patients from Morris County and across North Jersey who have ended up at Greystone due to severe mental illness,’’ said Sheriff Gannon.

“Those patients – who are our family members and friends and neighbors and co-workers — count on the staff and administration of this hospital to provide the best care possible and in a most secure setting. I look forward to working with the other trustees to make sure they get the care they deserve.’’

Also appointed by the Governor to the Greystone Board of Trustees are:

  • Michele Brown of Mendham, who was Gov. Christie’s Appointments Counsel and headed the state Economic Development Authority;
  • Wayne Hasenbalg of Randolph, who is CEO of the New Jersey Sports and Exposition Authority and former Deputy Chief of Staff to Gov. Christie;
  • Morris Township Mayor Bruce Sisler;
  • Attorney Louis Modugno, a partner in the McElroy, Deutsch, Mulvaney & Carpenter law firm;
  • Jim DiGiulio of Chatham, who is Chief Counsel to Gov. Christie.
  • Peter Simon of Jersey City; Chief of Staff to the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

Greystone, which is located in Parsippany, houses more than 500 patients in a relatively new state facility that replaced an ancient hospital campus that was constructed in the 1800s and early 1900s. There have been reports of complaints in recent months by mental health advocates and some board members about a lack of patient safety in the hospital.

Gov. Christie in December announced a contract with New Solutions, a health-consulting firm in New Brunswick, to perform an assessment of of the situation at Greystone and all state psychiatric hospitals.