[gardeners] RE: S.C. City Repays NY Fire Department in Spades

Pennyattach@netscape.net (gardeners@globalgarden.com)
Sat, 08 Dec 2001 02:44:44 -0500

> This made the LA Times yesterday. It came from the Associated Press. Get out your Puffs. You're gonna need them. 

>West Columbia, S.C.
>Middle schoolers who collected more than $500,000 for New York City firefighters to repay a 134-year-old debt of kindness were thanked in person Wednesday.
>Four members of Ladder Co. 101 thanked students who sold T-shirts, baked cookies and collected the money in the weeks after the Sept. 11 attack.
>Seven firefighters from the ladder company died and the station's ladder truck was destroyed when the World Trade Center towers collapsed. The money will be used to buy a new ladder truck for the company, based in the Red Rock section of Brooklyn.
>"The outpouring of support helps to ease the pain," Capt. Tom Calkins said as the firefighters fought back tears. "The heart of America is right here in Columbia, South Carolina."
>The gift repays a debt incurred when New York firefighters bought a hose reel wagon for the city of Columbia after the Civil War. 
>The students originally collected $354,000 and presented a check to firefighters in New York on Thanksgiving Day. As word of the effort spread, and additional $152,000 poured in from across the country. 
>The extra money, which the school gave to the firefighters Wednesday, means a more expensive ladder truck can be bought for the station. 
>"Your gift will help us rebuild the New York City fire department," Capt. Tom Giordano said. 
>The new truck will carry a plaque bearing the names of the station's firefighters killed Sept. 11 and commemorating White Knoll Middle School's efforts. 
>The people in South Carolina used some Southern hospitality to make Calkins and his fellow firefighters feel at home. They were given barbecue sauces from around the state, grits and a football signed by Clemson University head coach Tommy Bowden and several players. 
>"We have been here less than 24 hours and we have been treated like kings, " Calkins said. 

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