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Miminegash firefighters speechless and teary eyed at arrival of new truck

The truck's arrival marked nearly three years of hard work by the community, the fire department and the Miminegash Firemenettes. 


Published on July 15, 2017

Miminegash Fire Chief Wayne Gallant, left, Crystal Gallant, president of the Miminegash Firemenettes, and deputy chief Rob Tremblay show off the community's new fire truck which was delivered on Saturday. The new, $350,000 truck was paid for through numerous fundraisers put on by the firemenettes, the fire department, and numerous community groups and organizations.

©WAYNE THIBODEAU/THE GUARDIAN

MIMINEGASH, P.E.I. - Miminegash fire chief Wayne Gallant, says he was left speechless as the newest piece of equipment for his fire department rolled into his community Saturday. 

"It's like a dream come through," said Gallant, a veteran firefighter with the West Prince department. 

"It is going to have a huge impact on our department, our community and our fire district."

The truck's arrival marked nearly three years of hard work by the community, the fire department, and especially the support network behind the fire department, the Miminegash Firemenettes. 

Miminegash firefighters painted a special thank you on the back of their new fire truck to thank the Miminegash Firemenettes for their fundraising efforts. The group raised $90,000 towards the $350,000 truck, which was delivered on Saturday.

©WAYNE THIBODEAU/THE GUARDIAN

Raising the $350,000 for the truck, and another $50,000 or more for equipment on the truck, is no easy feat for a community with a population base of less than 200 people. 

Crystal Gallant, president of the Miminegash Firemenettes, says her group formed in January 2007 following two major fires in the community. 

Sue Murphy, second right, member services representative with the Tignish Credit Union, presents the Miminegash Fire Department with a cheque for $5,000 towards the purchase of the department's new truck, behind them. From left, are deputy chief Rob Tremblay, fire chief Wayne Gallant, and Duffy Chaisson, engineer with the department.

©WAYNE THIBODEAU/THE GUARDIAN

The idea, she said, is that they would bring tea, coffee and food to firefighters during major fires. 

"I think we only did that once," she said, standing by the bright red fire truck, which had a special thank you to her dedicated group of volunteers painted on the back of the truck. 

"We were too busy with the fundraising."

The Firemenettes helped raise funds for badly needed equipment, a rescue van and for the past three years the new pumper. 

Miminegash firefighters paid special tribute to the Miminegash Firemenettes, who raised more than $90,000 towards the department's new $350,000 fire truck. The thank you is painted on the back of the truck.

©WAYNE THIBODEAU/THE GUARDIAN

The group of 14 women raised more than $90,000 through dances, dinner theatre and its annual Oktoberfest celebrations. 

But more work is needed, she said. 

The truck is not fully paid for and it has to be supplied with more lifesaving equipment. 

The Miminegash Fire Department now has two pumpers, a tanker, and a rescue van. 

The fire chief said that will provide a better level of protection for the fire district, and better equipment for the 28 firefighters who volunteer with the department. 

"Now, when we respond to a mutual aid call, we can have one pumper back in the community, just in case."

Santa himself delivered the truck during the Miminegash Fire Department Festival, a three-day fundraiser for the fire department. 

Rob Tremblay, deputy chief, said the arrival of the new truck was emotional. 

"I am still a bit teary-eyed," said Tremblay. 

"It was so much work. I can't believe it is finally here."

 

 

Miminegash Fire Department's new fire truck arrives with Santa on board during the Miminegash Fire Department's annual summer festival on Saturday.

©WAYNE THIBODEAU/THE GUARDIAN