Long-time firefighter honored with 58-vehicle birthday parade

Apr 21, 2020

David Wahlstrom, a long-time Wareham Firefighter who is battling brain cancer, was greeted by a long procession of old colleagues, friends and family members outside of his Megansett Drive home for his 57th birthday on Tuesday, April 21. 

Counting firetrucks, ambulances, police cars, motorcycles and more, the birthday parade had a total of 58 vehicles. According to Wahlstrom’s friend Eileen Scully, that represents one vehicle for every year he’s been alive, plus one more for good luck.

In addition to birthday wishes, Wahlstrom’s former colleagues gave him a firefighter’s helmet to commemorate his many years of service. Scully said that he first joined the Wareham Fire Department in 1979. He left to join the Marine Corps for some time, but returned to his hometown fire department in 2004. He was diagnosed with cancer in 2017, and officially retired in 2019. 

Scully added that members of the Fire and Iron Motorcycle Club came all the way from Maine and Connecticut to see their fellow club member on his birthday. 

On his 57th birthday, he braved the rain under an umbrella, and watched the 58-vehicle parade in his front yard with his close friend Danielle Desrosiers.

Wahlstrom said that the parade came as a surprise, and joked that it “certainly woke the neighborhood up.” 

After the long line of sirens, horns, and balloons had passed, he said that he was overwhelmed, and that he wanted to “thank everyone who took time out of their day to wish me a happy birthday.”