LOUDONVILLE, N.Y. (NEWS10) – Loudonville-Shaker Fire Department boys and girls raised money Saturday by washing cars and collecting bottles to buy gear like this.
“When you’re on the ruck and you’re going down the street and the lights and sirens, they really hit you and it just gives you a great feeling,” said Patrick Ethier, aspiring firefighter.
The explorer program at the Loudonville-Shaker Fire Station trains young people ages 14-18 for all types of scenarios. These volunteer kids can actually assist outside buildings during real fires, and that’s the thrill of it all, Zach Palaszynski believes
“You see fire and it’s not something you see every day. Running down the street in your fire truck going super-fast with all the lights and sirens, it’s kind of just a rush of energy,” Palaszynski said.
The training is comprehensive and by age 18, the kids are ready to go out and face real fires, but it doesn’t come cheap.
“Training can be very expensive, including fuel costs and getting resources,” Palaszynski said.
The boys and girls raise money all summer long for gear and equipment and they do it one car wash at a time.
“The car wash we draft during the summer and we have maybe three or four each year and these bring in enough money for maybe one set of gear,” Palaszynski said.
The funds are also used for trips to other fire stations but the one thing money can’t buy is the friendship these kids found in Loudonville.
“It really is a brotherhood. A brotherhood and sisterhood you know we have girls in the fire department as well, but we are all like a big family that’s what it is and I wouldn’t change it,” Ethier said.
The boys and girls were out all day getting their hands dirty or clean as it may be, as they washed cars to raise money for their program. They will also run more car washes July 1st, 22nd, and August 19th.