Local fire departments say Crusade collection a success

Editor Stephanie Taylor-Ferriell

The 66th annual WHAS Crusade for Children brought in $5.69 million, topping last year’s total by $15,000.

The Crusade collection took place the weekend of May 31st-June 2nd in Kentucky and southern Indiana.

Fire departments are the leaders in the Crusade effort. Most are familiar with the sight of local firefighters staffing roadblocks, extending a boot to passing motorists. Nearly 60 percent of donations are collected by about 200 fire departments in Kentucky and southern Indiana.

Many Washington County fire departments take part in the effort and have for decades.

On Friday, May 31, Salem firefighter Mike Mead was collecting donations at the north end of the square. He’s participated in the Crusade for years and said he doesn’t mind standing for hours to accept donations because the money goes to a great cause.

This year, the Salem FD collected approximately $8,800.

Posey Township VFD collected $2,683.90. The fire company had boots in Hardinsburg at Roosters and Blues Café as well as Save-A-Step in Palmyra.

“One weekend we had a roadblock in Hardinsburg and also went door to door another weekend,” said Sondra Rippy, a member of the department.

Some of the money donated locally comes back to the community in the form of grants. Many residents’ lives are touched by the Crusade through grants given to organizations, hospitals and health agencies.

“The Crusade is another way the members of the volunteer fire company give to the community and help the disabled kids that live in Washington County,” said Rippy.

Pierce-Polk VFD had a great Crusade year, collecing $7,305.27 for the weekend total, an increase over last year.

“We are so grateful to those of you that donated at our checkpoint, made personal contributions via check, or had personal fundraising efforts and donated that to our effort for the Crusade for Children,” said Chief Jeff Miller. “This is a very important charity for us and we are proud to participate in it. But like everything else we do, we could not do it with any true hope of success without you.”

He thanked one person in particular, Cassidy Bryant, who donated $1,200 on her own – in addition to helping at the checkpoint location.

“She donated her $100 winnings from a chili cook-off and then $1,100 she received from collected aluminum cans! She’s a huge friend to Pierce Polk Fire-Rescue and has donated more than $2,000 over the last two years!”

In its first 66 years, the Crusade has raised more than $185 million for children with special needs. One hundred percent of all donations raised Crusade weekend are returned in the form of grants to agencies, schools and hospitals that make life better for children with special needs in Kentucky and southern Indiana.

Crusade officials said monies are still being received, so totals from individual counties won’t be known for a while. She also said all information regarding donations by specific organizations has not yet been entered on the Crusade website. Collection totals and grants awarded will be released in July.

A total of $22,965 was collected in Washington County in 2018.

For more information about the Crusade for Children, visit www.whascrusade.org


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