One of the enduring legacies of the General Warren Emergency Company #2 is the statue of General Joseph Warren. The General, a three foot high painted plaster likeness of the great man, has occupied its place in the company history and quarters for time immemorial. The origins of the General are unknown, and his being will be forever a mystery.
In the mid 1930’s, an argument was made that the General was the only member that responded from all 3 firehouses. That argument, made by a former Chief and President who himself responded from 2 of the 3, is the most information the company has on the statue. Through the late 50’s, Smokey led the salute to the General at all company functions.
Always front and center on meeting night, the General was often stolen from his home in the meeting room and hidden away by rival companies. This often happened around Convention time and in 1954, his kidnapping and subsequent ransom was front page news in the Times. He went missing for nearly 6 months.
Brother Gordon is seen here caught flipping the bird at the kidnappers, who returned him just in time for his Birthday Party, the Centennial Dinner of the Company in Bear Mountain. Needless to say, he was returned that night safe and sound and all were able to sing happy birthday and raise a toast in his memory, in the normal course of business.
Real traditions never fade, and the General survives today. He was repaired in the late 1970’s under the watchful eye of former Captain Frank McKiernan. The rehab included a new sword, which was hand-made, and a complete paint job. The General now lives in a box that protects him from the elements.
Ex-Chief Jack Ginnity led the company in its salute to the General for many years. To hear Jack sing Happy Birthday up at the Lodge was classic, and the tradition stands. In recent years, the company has used a graven image of the General for certain events where travel is an issue, but he still comes out for all special occasions.