Thursday, February 1, 2007
Volunteer firemen honored with dinner
The Ladies Auxiliary honored our volunteer firemen last week with an appreciation dinner. There are approximately 20 men in this community who are on stand-by, twenty four hours a day, to provide the necessary services needed in case of a fire or other life threatening catastrophe. These volunteers put their lives on the line in this dangerous job and we owe every one of them a great deal of respect and gratitude.
I spoke with Fire Chief Flake Farmer about the history of our fire department, which was formed in 1973. A 1946 International tanker was purchased from money raised by our community and was housed in the building on Lake View Drive, which is now the town’s maintenance shop. In 1976, a used pumper truck was purchased, they attained a charter, and there were approximately twelve volunteers. By the mid-’80s their first insurance rating was a class “Nine”. In 1996, a new firehouse was built on Snow Lake Drive with the aid of a FEMA grant, local funds, donations and money raised by the ladies auxiliary. This firehouse presently is home to four fully equipped, fire trucks. The fire department now has a class “Eight” rating and approximately 20 volunteer firemen!
This fire department could not survive from the ARC grants and the local funds it receives. It is like any business; it must have income to produce the necessary service for our community. One hose nozzle cost hundreds of dollars and items like flashlights must be approved and are very costly. The hard working ladies of the auxiliary raise approximately half of the necessary funds that are needed to run the fire department. They work throughout the year raising donations and having bake sales and yard sales. They have also raised enough money to furnish the firehouse with generators, cots, blankets and all other necessary supplies for us in case of an emergency. Many thanks to; Frances, Elizabeth, Bobbie, Jane, Dixie, Sue, Gail, Lee, T.J., Carol and the other new members who give so much of their time.
Once a year a letter is sent to property owners asking for a yearly donation of $50, which amounts to only thirteen cents a day or four dollars a month. Surprisingly, a few homeowners do not send any money, while still receiving the same service as those who donate. If all homeowners donated, other homeowners would not have to give more than their share and the ladies of the auxiliary would not have to work as hard all year. Most of the permanent residents at the lake are retired, and pay little, if any, property taxes. This results in a shortage of public funds to properly fund the fire department; thus the necessity for the letter being sent to property owners asking for donations. So please do your share in supporting your fire department.
Years ago when I arrived home and found our home in flames, I was terrified that our teenage daughter might have returned home early and was asleep inside the house. The Germantown Fire Department arrived and several firemen went inside to see if our daughter was there and one fireman received burns to his body. After the fire, they stayed outside our home with millions of dollars in fire equipment until it was safely boarded up.
If we ever need emergency health care or our house catches on fire, we know that the Snow Lake Fire Department through donations is rushing toward our home
Our monthly town meeting will be held this Monday, February 5 at 7 p.m. As small as Snow Lake is, it is my understanding that we have the largest attendance of any town in this area. This is a pretty good assumption that we care about our community. Everyone should attend our meetings where you will be informed of how your aldermen are going to spend your money and their future plans for your town. This will be the second meeting of the year for the newly formed board and our newly elected mayor has created a goal of working as a team. We wish them wisdom, good judgment and patience when making decisions that will affect us all. There will always be frustrations in all towns; but out of respect for their fellow alderman, patience to work through their differences and compassion for their town, the answers will come easily.
The community center is having a spaghetti dinner on February 10 at 7 p.m. For $7 you will be served spaghetti and all the trimmings, so mark your calendar. Come have some good food and lots of fun.
The community center is also having a yard sale in April or May. If you have any donations please take them to Joann Martinez’s house
Sue Shears was in the hospital last week, and she will be good as new in a few days.
Sue Graves had some oral surgery last week but is doing great. Ed McCully, Joy Priest and Exel Dishion are still recuperating. Remember the sick, the aged and those who have lost a loved one.
Pray for our young men and women who are across the globe, that they will not come in harm’s way as they fight for our country.
Our country is so divided; only our prayers will make it safe and whole.
Happy Birthday, honey!
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