Several boots filled by fund raiser

Published 5:00 am Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Brookhaven firefighters raised more than $2,300 as part of athree-week nationwide campaign for the Muscular DystrophyAssociation.

Firefighters wrapped up their campaign Friday evening with theirmost successful effort of the drive, compiling half of the totalamount.

“There were a lot of very good donations. A lot of bills,”firefighter Kelly Porter said Friday.

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The Brookhaven campaign was organized to allow the department’sthree shifts to compete against one another for bragging rights.Each shift collected donations in front of a local store eachFriday of the campaign.

Second shift was the last to collect Friday and raised nearly$1,200 to win the department competition. Third shift opened thecampaign three weeks ago and set the pace with their collection ofapproximately $725. First shift collected approximately $425 twoweeks ago.

This was the first year Brookhaven had participated in thecooperative effort between fire departments nationwide and MDA inthe “Fill The Boot” campaign, said Brookhaven Fire Chief BobWatts.

“I didn’t know what to expect,” he said. “We’re certainlypleased with the result. I think the guys have enjoyed being a partof this. We’re glad they contacted us.”

The department will certainly participate again next year, Wattssaid.

“We may get more innovative with it next year,” he said, addingthat other events such as car washes would probably beincluded.

Funds raised by the Brookhaven firefighters will be used instatewide efforts to provide services for individuals withneuromuscular disease.

The funds will be used for MDA clinic visits at the Universityof Mississippi Medical Center and the Gulf Coast Neurology Centeras well as to host support group sessions and assist with thepurchase of medical equipment. The effort will also help supportthe local MDA summer camp at Camp Wesley Pines in Gallman.

Across the nation, firefighters have teamed up with MDA for morethan 50 years.