Over the last couple months, students in Greater Lawrence Technical School’s Auto Body shop had a special project to complete.
Following the passing of Methuen Firefighter Patrick McKallagat in November 2017, Fire Chief Tim Sheehy reached out to GLTS to help restore an antique fire call box for his family.
Under the leadership of Auto Body Instructor Thomas Hatem, students removed rust and damage to the call box, gave it a fresh coat of paint and placed a tribute to Firefighter McKallagat inside.
Auto body sophomore Ranphyl Jaime, of Lawrence, and carpentry sophomore Angel Inoa, of Methuen, took the lead on the project under the guidance of Hatem.
“It was an honor for students to be able to work on this project,” Hatem said. “Not only did they get to use skills learned in the classroom to repair the call box, but they helped create what will be a cherished piece of history for the McKallagat family.”
On Friday, Jan. 12, the members of the Methuen Fire Department arrived at GLTS to retrieve the newly restored call box and to thank students for their dedication and hard work.
“We are so proud of the amazing work that the students at GLTS put in to restore the fire call box,” Fire Chief Sheehy said. “It serves as a lasting tribute to the dedication of firefighter Patrick McKallagat and his family. I want to thank Superintendent John Lavoie and Auto Body instructor Tom Hatem for their support of this project. When I spoke to Tom about it, he really responded positively and motivated the students to participate. His input and enthusiasm made it all possible. The finished product is extremely impressive.”
In the coming weeks, firefighters will present the newly restored call box to Firefighter McKallagat’s family.