First responders celebrate 100 years of the Philadelphia 2nd Alarmers Association

The Philadelphia 2nd Alarmers Association brings everything from food and water to extra batteries.
PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- For the past 100 years in Philadelphia, when a fire breaks out or police are called to an emergency, first responders have been able to count on one thing.

"I can always look to my left, or right, or even behind me, and find 'The Second Alarmers,'" said Philadelphia Police Commissioner Danielle Outlaw.

The Philadelphia 2nd Alarmers Association is a group of volunteers who respond with police and fire to offer help.

"On those cold evenings or those hot days, they're always willing to lend a hand and lend a shoulder to lean on," said Philadelphia Mayor Jim Kenney.

They bring everything from food and water to extra batteries.

"When we were first formed, it was just kind of coffee service, just serving coffee. We're not just doing fluids. We're doing equipment, especially with firefighters," said chief Gregory Masi, who has led the volunteers for the past 20 years. "It's in our blood to do this. We don't get paid for it. We enjoy giving back to our first responders to make their job a little bit easier when they're out there on those long emergency scenes."

With 100 years of service and countless calls aiding first responders, the Philadelphia 2nd Alarmers Association has become notorious for one thing. They call it 'bug juice.'

Even commissioner Outlaw asks for it when she's on the job.

"I didn't know anything about bug juice until I got here," joked Outlaw.

"Bug juice is our form of Gatorade," said Masi. "Firemen and police, they don't like Gatorade. They like our bug juice. It's got the same electrolytes. They call it green champagne."

It's one more reason to celebrate 100 years of Philadelphia's helpers.

"It is fantastic to be here with all of you celebrating this happy occasion and a different type of never forget," said Philadelphia Fire Commissioner Adam Thiel.

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