Firefighters Mark Ralph (left)

Firefighters Mark Ralph (left)

Truckers buy fire trucks for McLeese Lake

The McLeese Lake Volunteer Fire Department is thrilled with a generous donation from the West Fraser Truckers Association.

The McLeese Lake Volunteer Fire Department is thrilled with a generous donation from the West Fraser Truckers Association which has allowed the department to purchase the two trucks they have had on lease.

The truckers recently donated  $5,000 which allowed the department to purchase the two fire trucks that were previously on loan to the department, explains Ian Hicks, one of the department’s captains.

He has a big, enthusiastic smile on his face as he explains how overwhelmed with gratitude the department is to the truckers.

“We still have difficulty comprehending it all,” Hicks says.

Without the donation from the truckers, Hicks says it would have taken a very long time for the society to raise the money needed to purchase the fire trucks through their usual  burger roasts,  garage sales, flower sales, and their primary fundraiser, the bottle and can bin at the general store.

Hicks says these fundraising efforts can generate more than $500 per month and the department is grateful to the residents of McLeese Lake for their continuous support. Last year he says the members were amazed by people’s generosity.

“Some patrons game us $50 for just one burger,” Hicks says. “They said it’s for a good cause – keep the change!”

Ongoing fundraising helps to pay for costs such as truck and liability insurance, gas and repairs.

Formed two and a half years ago the McLeese Lake Fire Department now has about 12 members who have all had basic training, Hicks explains.

Sheer determination has brought this crew together, he says. Their main goal is to be present for the community – their community. The members can run the trucks, pump water, fight fire, stay safe and most importantly keep the fire from spreading, Hicks explains.

In 2014 he says the department attended three fires, one near the railway tracks, one up on the power line and a truck fire on the highway.

As we continue to talk, Hicks can’t help but reiterate his appreciation to the truckers. He wants them to know the gratitude from everyone in McLeese Lake can’t be expressed enough.

He also expresses his thanks to the community for their support and encourages all residents to come out and support the fire department’s fundraising events in 2015.