Apr 28, 2011 | Grant History, Public Service

Knowing that local fire fighters have modern tools and training makes residents in many Michigan townships feel safer at home and on the road.  The Gerstacker Foundation has supported many projects that help save lives over the years.

Grants, for example, helped Rudyard Township buy pagers for better communications. Shepherd purchased a “Jaws of Life” package. Lee and Lincoln bought new fire apparatus. Edenville upgraded a brush fire truck. Jonesfield-Lakefield replaced its aging fire truck engine. Jerome bought a new rescue truck. Clement outfitted a new emergency vehicle.  Pennfield bought a tanker truck and grass rig truck.  Larkin purchased new self-contained breathing apparatus, and Midland updated water and ice rescue equipment.

Gerstacker Foundation grants also help train citizens and emergency personnel. A Midland Fire Safety House, for example, is used to teach safety skills to people of all ages, including the disabled. More recently, a five-year, $500,000 grant to The Homer Township Fire Department (HTFD) helped them build a Public Safety and Fire Training Facility that features a Fire Fighter’s Training Center, a Homer Township Fire Station, an ambulance station and more.

“This facility has met many important needs for Midland County, including the training of over 200 volunteer fire fighters, enabling them to respond in the best possible way,” said John Hanson, HTFD chief.