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June 12, 2021
IAFF Local Newswire
 
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Updated: Jun. 12 (16:00)

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Obituary of Retired Brother Joseph L. (Mookie) Baker

Joseph L. “Mookie” Baker, 65, retired Brockton firefighter, a lifelong proud resident of Brockton, passed away on April 26, 2021. Joseph was a firefighter who served the city of Brockton faithfully for 34 years until retirement while earning a degree from Massasoit Community College. He was an avid Boston sports fan who loved to golf and played softball. He also played basketball for East Jr. High School. His favorite roles were being “Dad” to his children and being a papa to his grandchildren. Joseph was the son of the late Raymond W. Baker Sr. and Margaret E. (Johnson) Baker; beloved father of Lindsey Cabrera and her husband Frankie of Virginia, and Derek Baker of Brockton; loving grandfather of Damare and Jordan; cherished brother of Raymond Jr., Richard, and Mark Baker, all of Brockton, and Vivian Baker Blake (Dwayne) of Hampton, VA; and a nephew, uncle, cousin, and friend of many. All are welcome to walk-through calling hours Friday, May 7th from 4-7 p.m. in Waitt Funeral Home, 850 North Main St., Brockton, his funeral service Saturday, May 8th at 10 a.m. in Waitt Funeral Home and burial at Melrose Cemetery.
73rd Anniversary of the PFFM

December 12, 2018

Brothers & Sisters,

Seventy-three years ago today, the Associated Fire Fighters of Massachusetts received our Charter from the International Association of Fire Fighters (IAFF). On that day, there were only twelve Locals in the newly formed “AFFM”. They included; Boston, Brockton, Cambridge, Gloucester, Holyoke, Lawrence, Lynn, New Bedford, Newburyport, Northampton, Quincy, and Springfield.

In 1975, at the AFFM Biennial Convention, the delegates voted to change the name to our current, Professional Fire Fighters of Massachusetts, effective January 1, 1976. 

As we prepare in the coming days, to lay our Worcester Local 1009 Brother Christopher Roy to rest, I ask you to pause and reflect on how we got to where we are today.

Our PFFM, which started as an Organization of just 12 Locals, has swelled to over 220, representing over 12,000 IAFF Fire Fighters and Emergency Medical Technicians and their families across Massachusetts.

We have been in the business of protecting fire fighters and their families for 73 years. We have stood at attention at the Line of Duty Death funerals for over 900 of our PFFM Brothers and Sisters. This is what we do as fire fighters. Our PFFM has secured countless benefits and pensions for widows and families, and ensured that our fallen are never forgotten. This is what we do as a Union. This is our business, and this is Our PFFM.

In closing, I am honored for the opportunity to be serving as your President, and I look forward to the challenges ahead.

In solidarity,

Richard MacKinnon, Jr.

Richard MacKinnon, Jr.

Proud President

Professional Fire Fighters of Massachusetts

12th Annual Fight for Air Climb

Brockton school committee member, retired firefighter, dies at 69

By Marc Larocque

July 27. 2016 11:57AM

Brockton school committee member, retired firefighter, dies at 69

BROCKTON – Wayne McAllister, who was the first African-American to hold elected office in Brockton, is being remembered for his service as a city firefighter for more than 30 years and as a civic leader known for his frank, thoughtful stances on issues facing the community.
“The one thing I can take solace in, after his passing, is knowing how many people he’s touched and helped,” said Sara Keough, one of his daughters. “He had pride in the city. He loved it here. He was willing to do anything for the residents of the city. That was basically his passion.”
McAllister, who remained on the Brockton Planning Board and the Southeastern Regional Vocational Technical High School Committee, died surrounded by family at his Brockton home on Tuesday after a long bout with cancer. He was 69.
Keough said her father, who often got other parents involved with community endeavors, such as forming a basketball team at the Arnone School, would never be afraid to speak his mind on issues of education, diversity and access to resources. When he addressed a problem, he researched it thoroughly and didn’t mince words when giving his opinion, said Keough and others.
“He said it like it is,” Keough said. “He had a way of saying things that was direct and to the point. I wouldn’t say it was necessarily rude. But it was frank. And often it was a little funny. That took the sting off, but you got his point, which I think is what made him likable. ... He always had a way with words.”
Former colleagues at the Brockton Fire Department recalled how McAllister taught them the trade. Archie Gormley, president of the Brockton Firefighters Local 144 union, was one of several people who referred to McAllister as a mentor.
“What he meant to the younger members was, when we came on, especially myself, he was looking out for us,” Gormley said. “He took us under his wing. He showed us what it was all about. He was able to make us understand how the fire department ran, and how we should act, and how we should behave, and what are our responsibilities.”
Gormley said the Brockton Fire Department mourns the death of McAllister, who is also a veteran of the U.S. Army, for which he received an honorable discharge. Gormley also thanked McAllister for his contributions to the firefighters union, as a former vice president for Local 144.
“It’s a loss for all us,” Gormley said. “I learned a lot from him, not only about being a firefighter, but about union representation ... to protect all our benefits and everything that firefighters fought for in the past. ... He was a great community activist.”
Gormley said too many firefighters are dying from cancer.
“People don’t realize this, but that’s the one disease that’ll take most of the firefighters' lives throughout their career,” he said. “I feel very deeply about his family and their loss. We’ll continue to help them in any way we can.”
McAllister was the first African-American elected to office in Brockton, as a representative for the city on the school committee for Southeastern Regional Vocational Technical High School, said friend and fellow planning board member Ollie Spears. McAllister served as a Brockton representative on the regional school committee since 2002, and remained on the committee until his death.

As a member of the Brockton Planning Board, McAllister was among a group of public officials who were named personally as defendants in a $82.8 million lawsuit filed in 2012 by Brockton Power, after the company was blocked from building a gas-fired power plant in the city. McAllister was the only one from the group of defendants who remained in office when Brockton Power dismissed individual defendants named in the lawsuit.
McAllister was also active with the Brockton Chapter NAACP, and was a member of the mayor’s crime and drug task force. McAllister also ran unsuccessfully for the Ward 4 City Council seat in 2005.

Through it all, McAllister was a "straight shooter," Spears said.
"Wayne was a mentor to me, personally and politically," said Spears, who remains on the Brockton Planning Board. "Wayne told it how it is, didn't hold back and stood his ground. This is what I admired about him."
A wake is scheduled for this Saturday from 3 to 8 p.m. at the Russell and Pica Funeral Home, 165 Belmont St., in Brockton. A burial with U.S. military honors will be held on Monday at 11:30 a.m. at the Massachusetts National Cemetery in Bourne.

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