Lake of the Woods Volunteer Fire and Rescue sending aid to Ukraine first responders

by | May 21, 2023 | Police and Fire

The Lake of the Woods Volunteer Fire & Rescue Company (LOWVFR) Board, and members, are committed to helping their fellow first responders, here and abroad.

The Board has unanimously voted to donate a retired from service 2001 Ford Explorer EMS Duty Officer car to US Ambulances for Ukraine, an Illinois based group sending used American ambulances and fire engines to Ukraine. Retired and aged equipment is proving invaluable across the
world as temporary vehicles to replace emergency vehicles that were destroyed during the Russian invasion of Ukraine. Within the next few weeks, the vehicle will be transferred to a US Ambulances for Ukraine’s storage location wherein it will receive some additional supplies before being shipped to Europe and eventually driven into Ukraine and turned over to Ukrainian first responders.

“This was a very unique opportunity for our organization to support our brothers and sisters in the fire and rescue service in the Ukraine.” LOWVFR Rescue Chief Rick Hooper said. “While in the US this apparatus is now used primarily as an operational reserve response unit with a few updates and added
equipment from US Ambulances for Ukraine this vehicle may still have life as a workable unit and signals that LOWVFR has not forgotten our fellow first responders, their loved ones, and their community.”

This vehicle will be part of a larger shipment of fire engines and ambulances from the United States that will be sent over this summer. To date, US Ambulances for Ukraine has 28 ambulances and 1 fire engine operating in Ukraine. The vehicles have been delivered to front line military units, fire departments, NGOs, hospitals, and other Ukrainian entities in need of these lifesaving vehicles. The group currently has another 15 vehicles in transit to Ukraine right now and expects them to be delivered and operational by the beginning of June which will bring the total number of ambulances to 38 and the total number of fire engines to 6.

“It is amazing to think that we will have 44 emergency vehicles in Ukraine by early June. It is just as amazing to know we already have additional ambulances and fire engines lined up for a shipment in July. It is because of donors like Lake of the Woods Volunteer Fire & Rescue Company that we can make this possible. Their generous donation of this EMS Duty Officer response unit is greatly needed and will be immediately put to good use in Ukraine saving lives. I am very grateful to them and all the other donors,” said Chris Manson, founder of US Ambulances for Ukraine.

Proudly serving our community since August 23, 1971 US Ambulances for Ukraine has partnered with UA Resistance Foundation, a 501c3 based out of Chicago (IL), focused on bringing lifesaving humanitarian aid to Ukraine. Together both groups, working in coordination with the Ukrainian government in Kyiv and the Ukrainian Consulate in Chicago have successfully delivered multiple shipments of aid and emergency vehicles since March of 2022.

For more information about US Ambulances for Ukraine, please check out their Twitter feed @ambulancesU while more information about UA Resistance Foundation may be found at their website www.UAResistance.Org The Lake of the Woods Volunteer Fire & Rescue Company responded to 898 calls for service in 2022 and serves the various residents, commercial businesses, houses of worship and academic institutions located in the Locust Grove, Germanna and Wilderness areas of Eastern Orange County along Route 3 and Route 20.

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