Canadian Firefighter Magazine

Remembering our Listowel brothers at FDIC

By Randy Vilneff   

Features Blogs Editor’s blog

Editor's note: Randy Vilneff, training officer for the Marmora and Lake Fire Department and a five-time FDIC attendee blogs this week for FFIC from Indianapolis.

March 25, 2011, Indianapolis - The idea for today's blog came to me last night while attending the Stop, Drop, Rock and Roll event to raise funds for the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation. Live entertainment, an auction, good food, drink and fellowship were in abundance. Truly a great time. There was $31,000 raised in the auction alone, thanks to willing suppliers and very giving bidders. Your generosity was overwhelming.

I met a woman there from the NFFF who lost a son fire fighting. He re-entered a building searching for two kids when the floor beneath him collapsed. She was proud to tell me her story and praise the NFFF for its support; she is now a corporate relations specialist with the NFFF, helping to raise funds so other families can have the support that they deserve in their hours of need.

It somehow seemed appropriate that this event would be held on the same day as the funerals for the two firefighters who died in Listowel, Ont. Believe me when I say that they were on the minds of everyone down here.

It also struck me that here in Indianapolis, at one of the largest fire shows in North America, we are surrounded by the best, state-of-the art equipment, tools, seminars and training sessions designed to help us do our jobs – putting the wet stuff on the red stuff – yet somehow, something failed and we have two fewer brothers today.

Several weeks ago, I was getting ready for bed and, as all volunteer firefighters know, we lay out clothes at night, ready for the pager to go off at any time. I figure that I have done that about 10,000 times; I plan on doing it a few more. So, as we reflect on these events, let us hope that there are many, many more nights of firefighters laying out their clothes and that our families will not have to call on the support of the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation for support.


Randy Vilneff is the training officer for the Marmora and Lake Fire
Department and a sales representative for M&L Supply. This is his
fifth trek to FDIC.

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