Columbia Fire Department and Columbia Firefighter’s Association surpasses 2013 total raised by $11,000
Columbia Fire Chief Aubrey D. Jenkins and members of the Columbia Fire Department were proud to present a check yesterday (April 8th) to Logan Moore, MDA Columbia District Ambassador and Tara Heil, Executive Director of the MDA Columbia District for $143,214; total raised by CFD for the 2014 MDA Boot Drive.
“CFD members look forward to this every year and when we are able to surpass our previous year’s total, well it just makes it that more special! Of course we can’t do it without the help of the City of Columbia, Richland County and those that make a donation in the boot.”
The MDA, the Columbia Fire Department and the Columbia Firefighter’s Association annually host the Boot Drive every March over a three day period at multiple intersections throughout the City of Columbia and Richland County.
Tara Heil stated, “The money raised by the Columbia Fire Department will be used to assist local families living with muscle disease. We are closer than ever to a cure, and with the help of partners like these brave men and women, we will win this fight!”
Chief Jenkins and Logan Moore, Midlands MDA Ambassador kicked off the 2014 campaign by passing “The Boot” to City Council and Staff during the March 7th City Council meeting. Chief Jenkins said, “This partnership has collected over $2.3 million in the past 14 years and we could not have accomplished that without the citizens of the City of Columbia and Richland County.”
Though the Columbia Fire Department’s relationship with the Muscular Dystrophy Association goes back for more than 50 years, the Department’s dedication and commitment to the Boot Drive is inspired by Taylor Lever McEntire grandson of CFD Battalion Chief Tommy Taylor, who was stricken with Spinal Muscular Atrophy. Taylor’s spirit continues to be a driving force behind the boot drive that has helped families throughout the Midlands and has risen over $2.3 million in the past 14 years.
Taylor was an honorary member of the Columbia Fire Department, the South Carolina Fireman’s Association and the Professional Firefighters’ Local 793 of Columbia, S.C. He also was the spokesperson for MDA and the Firefighters. He was MDA’s South Carolina Goodwill Ambassador and spoke at many events to help raise monies for the Muscular Dystrophy Association. He was an Easter Seal’s State Representative and helped raise money for the Buck A Cup campaign. He was the recipient of the first annual Taylor McEntire Courage Award, which is awarded to a CFD recruit at graduation.
MDA is the nonprofit health agency dedicated to curing muscular dystrophy, ALS and related diseases by funding worldwide research. The Association also provides comprehensive health care and support services, advocacy and education. MDA is funded almost entirely by individual private contributions and cooperating organizations. Only nine percent of every dollar collected is spent on administrative costs.