Pawtucket first responders staff community pool after lifeguard shortage caused delay in opening

The lifeguards are made up of four Pawtucket police officers and fifteen firefighters. 

PAWTUCKET, R.I. (WLNE)- Pawtucket police officers and firefighters stepped up to become certified lifeguards amid a lifeguard shortage that caused a major delay in the opening of the City’s community pool.

Pawtucket’s Veterans Memorial Park Pool opened Saturday.

“We heard the pool wasn’t going to open. The City needs this,” said Pawtucket firefighter Milton Giard.

“The firefighters and police officers being here makes it a sense of community,” lifelong resident Marlena Stachowiak told ABC6 News.

Pawtucket Police Sergeant Michael Cioe and his teenage son Ethan decided to give back to their community by both becoming certified lifeguards this summer.

“Thought it was a great opportunity to get the community back out socialize with each other and have access to a public pool,” Sgt. Cioe explained.

“I think it’s a fun bonding time spending more time with him will be fun,” Cioe’s son Ethan, told ABC6.

Sgt. Cioe said the pool is crucial for the community, especially after the pandemic. He feels having first responders nearby only builds that sense of community.

The lifeguards are made up of four Pawtucket police officers and fifteen firefighters.

The City’s pool is open seven days a week through August 28. Admission is $1 per person but free for Pawtucket residents.

Categories: News, Pawtucket, Regional News, Rhode Island