PDT Staff Writer
It was Labor Day weekend, which meant three things for sure - the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) was holding their telethon, the Portsmouth firefighters were getting their boots filled with money for Jerry’s kids, and Ronnie Galloway was again conducting his fundraising efforts - this year netting $90, which was promptly added to the just-under $1,600 raised by the firefighters, who are members of Local 512 of the IAFF.
“Them guys right here are my heroes,” Galloway said, surrounded by members of the Portsmouth Fire Department. “They helped me raise money for Muscular Dystrophy.”
Galloways heart is in the campaign because he himself suffers from MD. Galloway said MDA paid for the control box on his wheel chair, which makes the operation more convenient.
“We fill the boot every year,” Chris Lowery of the PFD said. “Of course we do other things out in the community with people, and Ronnie wanted to walk in the (River Days) parade with us this year and he took a boot and started trucking down the road with us. He doesn’t quite keep up with the American Legion guys. By the time we got there, we were the beginning of a new parade. They were gone.”
“We send that money to the actual Association. Ours is based out of Cincinnati,” Lowery said. “If we have a local need, we try to fill that need locally. In the past, we have actually used the money to renovate. We made a little girl’s house accessible for her. We have bought wheel chairs for the girls, ramps, but normally the money does go to Cincinnati and they distribute it from there.”
Lowery took the opportunity to make a big announcement standing with Galloway in front of a fire tuck on the parking lot at the Star Workshop.
“We helped Ronnie get his new chair,” Lowery said. “He’s got a new one coming. So we’re going to make sure they take care of him and get him his chair.”
Lowery said the partnership came together earlier in the week.
“He came and ate pizza with us the other day,” Lowery said. “He had some pizza and took a little tour.”
“I’ve dreamed about being with the fire department and helping them out,” Galloway said. “And that’s why I’m here. God got my answers.”
Frank Lewis may be reached at 740-353-3101, ext. 252, or at firstname.lastname@example.org. For breaking news, follow Frank on Twitter @FrankLewisPDT.