Quilts a warm reminder of community’s support

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  • Photo by MANDI BATEMAN Left to right: Justine Williams holding the quilt for Clyde Steed, Sandy Steinhagen, Ben Allinge, Matt Cossalman, Marty Steinhagen, Allen Gemmrig, Wally Nyberg, Bill Branson, Andy Durette, Brad Lowther, Lori Koubek holding the quilt for David Adams, Anna Chase holding the quilt for Raymond Flower, Diana Schnuerle holding the quilt for Frank Crabtree, and Laurie Schnuerle holding the quilt for Garry Wright.

  • 1

    Photos by MANDI BATEMAN Hall Mountain Assistant Chief Bill Branson and Hall Mountain Fire Chief Brad Lowther with their quilts, presented by the HMVFA Ladies Auxiliary during the Sept. 28 appreciation potluck dinner.

  • 2

    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN The attendees watch as the Hall Mountain Firefighters receive their handmade quilts.

  • 3

    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN Hall Mountain Firefighter and EMT, Sandy Steinhagen, admires her personalized quilt.

  • 4

    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN The goody table was filled with deserts and baked goods that people brought in.

  • 5

    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN There was a wide array of items and gift certificates available for people to bid on in the silent auction.

  • 6

    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN Drawing the raffle tickets for the handmade quilt.

  • 7

    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN People bidding on silent auction items.

  • 8

    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN Sifting through over 1,500 raffle tickets for the rifle.

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    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN Many people turned out to show their appreciation for the Hall Mountain Firefighters.

  • 10

    Hall Mountain Firefighter and Training Officer Wally Nyberg (left photo) and Hall Mountain Firefighter Ben Allinger with their quilts.

  • 11

    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN Hall Mountain Firefighter, Ben Allinger, with his quilt.

  • Photo by MANDI BATEMAN Left to right: Justine Williams holding the quilt for Clyde Steed, Sandy Steinhagen, Ben Allinge, Matt Cossalman, Marty Steinhagen, Allen Gemmrig, Wally Nyberg, Bill Branson, Andy Durette, Brad Lowther, Lori Koubek holding the quilt for David Adams, Anna Chase holding the quilt for Raymond Flower, Diana Schnuerle holding the quilt for Frank Crabtree, and Laurie Schnuerle holding the quilt for Garry Wright.

  • 1

    Photos by MANDI BATEMAN Hall Mountain Assistant Chief Bill Branson and Hall Mountain Fire Chief Brad Lowther with their quilts, presented by the HMVFA Ladies Auxiliary during the Sept. 28 appreciation potluck dinner.

  • 2

    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN The attendees watch as the Hall Mountain Firefighters receive their handmade quilts.

  • 3

    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN Hall Mountain Firefighter and EMT, Sandy Steinhagen, admires her personalized quilt.

  • 4

    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN The goody table was filled with deserts and baked goods that people brought in.

  • 5

    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN There was a wide array of items and gift certificates available for people to bid on in the silent auction.

  • 6

    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN Drawing the raffle tickets for the handmade quilt.

  • 7

    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN People bidding on silent auction items.

  • 8

    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN Sifting through over 1,500 raffle tickets for the rifle.

  • 9

    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN Many people turned out to show their appreciation for the Hall Mountain Firefighters.

  • 10

    Hall Mountain Firefighter and Training Officer Wally Nyberg (left photo) and Hall Mountain Firefighter Ben Allinger with their quilts.

  • 11

    Photo by MANDI BATEMAN Hall Mountain Firefighter, Ben Allinger, with his quilt.

PORTHILL — “So ... how does one thank our Hall Mountain Volunteer Firefighters/First Responders?” said Justine Williams, president of the HMVFA Ladies Auxiliary. “These men and women donate their time to serve and protect us when emergency needs arise.”

The volunteer firefighters are honored each year on the last Saturday of September with an appreciation potluck.

This year it landed on Sept. 28, but the HMVFA Auxiliary wanted to take it one step further — beyond the large array of home-cooked and baked food, beyond the tables lines with silent auction items donated by members and businesses, and beyond the raffles. They wanted to truly show their love and appreciation for the dedication of the volunteers.

They found a way.

With hands and hearts, they created handmade quilts, each personalized to the firefighters themselves.

“We presented them with quilts as a reminder that we as a community know that they train on their own time off from their jobs or work, and sacrifice time spent away from their own families, to help us,” said Williams. “We also want to thank their families for sharing them as they jump in the trucks when there is a fire or accident, or when they respond to emergency medical calls.”

When the quilts were revealed at the Appreciation Potluck, the firefighters were surprised and emotionally touched, remarking on their beauty and attention to detail. The quilts had been lovely made by Williams and members of the auxiliary. They boasted the Hall Mountain Fire logo, embroidered by the far North Logo Shop, who volunteered this service.

Hall Mountain Fire Chief Brad Lowther was completely surprised by the quilt he was given.

“It is very humbling,” said Lowther. “We appreciate being appreciated. It is pretty awesome.”

Williams spoke about Lowther and the department’s respect for him. She said that she once overheard a firefighter stating that they would “follow Brad into any fire, because of his leadership.”

“As the President of the Auxiliary, I thought that was a high compliment,” said Williams.

The event was a success, with the fire hall packed with people who turned up to show their support, bringing food that lines the tables for the potluck. People bidded generously on the many items and gift certificates donated by individuals, as well as businesses.

They drew the winners for the raffles that had been held for a handmade quilt by Cindi Tindall and a Henry 45/70 Rifle. Dee Crane was the chosen winner of the quilt, and Keith Fairchild won the rifle.

“We as first responders just want to do what we can, when we can, while we can — to make somebody’s bad day a little better,” said Hall Mountain Firefighter Marty Steinhagen at the end of the day. “It does tear at you — little by little — but seeing each hand placed stitch, in something made just for you ... heals those tears right up.”

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