After 50-years as a firefighter with the Greenlawn Volunteer Fire Department on Long Island John BaRoss Sr. was kicked out of the department and told never to come back. It happened three-years-ago when BaRoss was 80 and worked a long day at a pizza stand during the annual department fair.
Fellow firefighters say they saw BaRoss pocket department money and called him a thief. The firefighter’s family says taking the money was a symptom of Alzheimers and are suing the department.
BaRoss Sr., a Korean War vet and retired phone-company worker, “still doesn’t understand what happened,” his son said.
The younger BaRoss said he begged Greenlawn officials to understand that his dad’s behavior was a symptom of Alzheimer’s. He says they ignored medical documentation he provided and banned him anyway.
Fire Chief Kurt Allen allegedly told BaRoss’ family, “I don’t know much about Alzheimer’s but as far as I am concerned, he is a thief.”
Another chief, Stan Sadowski, “repeatedly admonished” the elderly man, telling his family the dedicated volunteer “should be arrested and jailed,” court papers say.