Rye Fire Department’s Senior Firefighter John Castelhano finished up his last tour and is retiring with over 29 years of service to the City of Rye.
“The fire department is very unique in the fact that almost all the employees were hired off a city list and grew up in Rye,” Castelhano told MyRye.com. “The thing I will miss the most about work is the group of people I worked with – the city is truly lucky.” Castelhano served as the VP or President for the Local 2029 union, part of the International Association of Firefighters, AFL-CIO, for over 25 years. He expects to remain involved with organized labor in his retirement.
Castelhano is retiring after two separate health issues, a foot/leg work injury and a hearing difficulty. “The City’s doctor discussed with me that my hearing difficulties were a major problem and then I got a second opinion at Yale Medical School, near my home, and that physician urged me to stop working due to work-created hearing damage and subsequent loss,” said Castelhano. “These are the developments that led to my retirement from my wonderful job.”
“John dedicated his career to the membership of the department and the safety of the citizens of Rye,” Rye FD Lieutenant John McDwyer told MyRye.com. “He was true asset to Rye and will be missed. We wish him the very best in his retirement.”
Castelhano started his career with the City of Rye in July of 1992. He attended his fire academy in the fall of 1992. He later went on to become the Union President of Local 2029 in 1997. The fire department underwent several change during his tenure as president of the local. He successfully negotiated several contracts, helped renovate two firehouses, was instrumental in having the City of Rye increase staffing, and started negotiations to have career officers added to the ranks of the department. John was also a responder to Ground Zero on 9/11.