Scandal: Major Changes To 108th Annual Event In Upstate New York
An alleged scandal is forcing major changes to a longtime event in the Hudson Valley and the cancellation of a beloved parade.
Firefighters Parade Cancelled In Wallkill, New York
The Washington Heights Fire Department took to Facebook to announce they are canceling the upcoming parade which was planned for Sept. 23.
Below is the full message:
To the community:
It is with a heavy heart that we are forced to cancel the parade to be held on Saturday, September 23, 2023. Unfortunately, for reasons that we cannot at this time share, we believe that it is in the best interests of everyone involved to do so. We will make all efforts to return any prepaid monies. We are extremely sorry for the inconvenience and understand that so many people have spent a great deal of time planning this event. Once we can provide a proper explanation to everyone, we will do so.
Potential Scandal, New York State Police Investigation
Officials didn't give the exact reason why the parade was being canceled. However, the Hudson Valley Post has been told New York State Police is investigating missing funds from the Washington Heights Fire Department.
Many believe the phrasing in the Facebook announcement, including "in the best interests of everyone involved" seems to point to a scandal.
Changes To the 108th Annual Convention Of The Orange County Volunteer Firemen's Association
A post from the Orange County Volunteer Firemen's Association also seems to confirm the rumors.
"Please know the OCVFA has not been involved in anything that may be rumored," the OCVFA said in a statement.
Officials also confirmed changes to the 108th convention.
"It is with a heavy heart we announce that the 108th Annual Convention Of The Orange County Volunteer Firemen's Association will no longer be supported by and hosted by the Washington Heights Fire Company," the OCVFA said.
The plan is to host a modified convention week, without a parade.
The Orange County Volunteer Firemen's Association executive board met this week on how to proceed with the 108th annual convention.
Some of the changes and all of the detail about the annual convention can be seen below: