Fire company founder remembered for dedication to Freehold Township

FREEHOLD TOWNSHIP – A founding member of the East Freehold Fire Company is being remembered for his decades of service to Freehold Township.

Samuel Polverino, 90, died at home on June 10. He is survived by his wife, Cheryl Ann “Cookie” Polverino. A moment of silence in Polverino’s memory was held at the June 16 meeting of the Township Committee.

According to an obituary from the Clayton and McGirr Funeral Home, Freehold Township, Polverino was a lifelong resident of Freehold Township who was born in a radish patch on his family’s cabbage farm.

He served in the U.S. Marine Corps during the Korean War and later worked as a maintenance supervisor at George Chevrolet for 23 years before retiring.

“I have had the privilege of knowing Sammy for the past 40 years,” Mayor Lester Preston said this week. “For the last 15 years, I was fortunate to have Sam and Cookie, his wife, as my neighbors. Sam is one of the most loved and respected people I have ever met.

“In the late 1960s, Sam was part of a group of men who saw the growth on the east side of Freehold Township and recognized the need for fire protection in a growing community.

“He was part of a group that was the driving force behind the creation of the East Freehold Fire Company. For over 50 years, Sam faithfully served, not only as a commissioner, a chief and a member, but as a mentor and a friend to those he came in contact with.

“Sam’s passing is not only a loss for our community, but for each of us individually. Like everyone who knew him, Sam held a special place in our heart and us in his. Rest easy, Sam,” the mayor said.

The East Freehold Fire Company was formed in 1967. The fire company, with headquarters on Dutch Lane Road, is responsible for providing firefighting services east of Route 9 in Freehold Township.

Polverino was a member of the Cpl. Philip A. Reynolds Marine Corps League since 1951 and American Legion Post 54, Freehold, for more than 60 years, according to his obituary.

His obituary states that although Polverino did not have any children of his own, he was regarded as a parent to many neighborhood children.

“Everyone who met Sam quickly became his friend who will all dearly miss him,” the obituary states.