St. Matthias Church Fire - 30 Years Later
By Department Historian
December 31, 2023

December 31, 1993 – Shortly after 17:00, a verbal report of Structure Fire at 109 Babbitt Road (St. Matthias Church) was reported to Fire Headquarters. Now, Ex-Chief Joseph M. Liburdi Sr. manning the base station (KBG-923) - transmitted the alarm reporting a working structure fire.

Mini-Attack 9 arrived within minutes of the initial report and attempted an aggressive interior attack through the front doors of the church, but were ultimately forced out of the structure due to the rapidly deteriorating conditions. Engine 197 laid duals from Mini-Attack 9 to the corner of Babbitt Road and Buxton Road and supplied MA-9.

Due to Snorkel 1 being out of service for maintenance Tower Ladder 14 from the Mount Kisco was special called. TL-14 took a position in the rear of the structure on the 2/3 corner and used its aerial master stream to knock down the bulk of the fire in the rear of the church.

Additional mutual aid was provided by Bedford - Engine 211 relocated to BHFD and Millwood - Rescue 36 (Cascade). It should be noted that the Katonah Fire Department was unavailable to provide mutual aid, as they were simultaneously operating at working structure fire in their own district.

Chief William E. Nickson was in charge

Photo Credit: Brian S. McGill

Units: Car 2031, Car 2032, Car 2033, Mini-Attack 9, Engine 196, Engine 197, Engine 199 & Utility 6
Mutual Aid: Bedford Village: Car 2041, Engine 211 - Relocate / Millwood: Rescue 36 / Mount Kisco: Car 2281, Engine 103, Tower Ladder 14 & Rescue 15

John G.Flynn December 31, 2023 at 11:50 PM
Unbelievably,one of the first fires I was in attendance at as an FF for BHFD.Teamwork & a lot dedication by all who turned out.