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Governor Jack Markell signs Michelle Smith's Law - Station 15
Friday, July 31, 2009

Governor Jack Markell signed into Law House Bill #204, known as the Michelle Smith's Law this morning at Station 15 on Fox 29’s live telecast of Fire House Friday. Under the legislation, any person who is found to have recklessly caused the death of an on-duty paramedic, emergency medical technician, fire marshal or fire police officer could be charged with "murder in the first degree" and receive capital punishment. People killing on-duty law enforcement officers, corrections employees and firefighters were already eligible for the death penalty prior to the enactment of the new law. Representative Earl Jaques (D – Glasgow) sponsored the legislation after finding out that Paramedics, EMT’s and others were not covered under the existing law. Once the bill passed both the House and Senate, Drew Volturo of the House Democratic Caucuses contacted us about the Governor coming to the station to sign the bill. Drew also told us about Fox 29’s Fire House Fridays and asked us if we would be interested in having Fox 29 broadcast live from our station from 0600 – 0900. Drew was able to line everything up with Fox 29 and Governor Markell was able to sign House Bill #204 into law on live television in front of our station with Michelle’s parents, Harvey and Joanne Newton, her daughter Emily and family friend Emily Simpson in attendance. Fox 29’s Jamie Shupak was able to interview Vice President Kalinowski in regards to our Solar Panel System. Emily was interviewed in front of her mom’s fire gear locker and Jamie was able to cover Governor Markell sign the law on live television and interview him and Representative Jaques. Her final interview was Cheryl Dennis in regards to the Fire Company’s outreach programs in supporting the community. There were over 30 Fire Company and Ladies Auxiliary members in attendance, along with many State and County Fire Officials. State Senator Bruce Ennis, Representative Richard Cathcart and State Senator Bethany Hall-Long, Delaware City Mayor John Martin and Town Manger Dan Tjaden were all in attendance. Dr. Harry Carter, FireHouse.com Contributor who was attending the Cumberland Valley Convention in Newark, DE made the trip with Honorary Member Ken McMahon and wrote two articles on the ceremony (links are below). Dave “Pop” Jones with help from Nancy Brannock provided breakfast for all who were in attendance. All of us at the Delaware City Fire Company would like to thank all the Legislators who co sponsored and supported House Bill #204, Governor Jack Markell for signing the bill at our station, Drew Volturo for setting all of this up, Fox 29 and Jamie Shupak for the Fire House Friday, the many County and State Fire Officials who were in attendance, the Membership and Career Staff of the Delaware City Fire Company for all the hard work during the week and especially to the family of Michelle Smith – Harvey, Joanne and Emily who were able to be with us today to help honor their daughter and mother. Fox Fire House Friday link: http://www.myfoxphilly.com/dpp/good_day_philadelphia/073109_Firehouse_Friday_Delaware_City Dr. Harry Carter's Articles: http://cms.firehouse.com/web/online/News/Commentary--Remembering-Michelle-Smith/46$64764 http://www.emsresponder.com/web/online/Top-EMS-News/New-Delaware-Law-Honors-Fallen-Paramedic/1$10082 Photos are courtesy of DCFC Photographer Dave "Pop" Jones and Cheryl Dennis. There will be more photos coming. Michelle will forever be in our hearts and memories…..


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