Bethesda FD receives donation for new truck

T-L Photo/CARRI GRAHAM Bethesda officials receive a donation from the Bethesda Epworth Park Cottage Owners Association. From left are Mayor Martin Lucas, association Treasurer Dave Logan and Fire Chief Neil Hunt.

BETHESDA — The village fire department is a little closer to its goal of purchasing a new ladder truck, thanks to the generosity of a community organization.

The Bethesda Epworth Park Cottage Owners Association made a $500 donation to the Bethesda Fire Department’s New Fire Truck Fund Drive. Association Treasurer Dave Logan presented the check to Mayor Martin Lucas and Bethesda Fire Chief Neil Hunt on Wednesday.

Logan explained the decision to donate to the cause.

“It was through the generosity of the cottage owners to support the local fire department because they (meet) our needs in emergencies. They take excellent care of us. We’re just proud to do it. … We take care of one another,” Logan said.

The department’s goal is to raise $500,000 to fund the purchase of a brand new aerial truck.

“Hopefully we can obtain that,” Hunt said.

Hunt has been chief for 20 years and a firefighter for almost 50. He said the current ladder truck is more than 30 years old. The department plans to purchase a brand new vehicle this time around, opposed to a used model, in hopes of getting more mileage out of it, Lucas said.

“It’s a needed piece of equipment. The one they have now, there’s been some maintenance issues with it. We’re looking to get a new aerial that will be built right here in Ohio,” Lucas added.

Hunt said that once the new truck is purchased, it will then take one year to build. The total cost of the Ohio manufactured truck is $850,000.

The remaining $350,000 of the cost will be covered by funds the fire department has raised over a longer period of time.

“We have obtained the funds over the years. It’s everything that we’ve worked for over the past 20 years,” Hunt said.

On Sunday, the final day of the Bethesda Festival, the fire department will hold a boot drive to benefit the truck fund, beginning at 6 p.m.

“Any support that is given to the fire department on this endeavor is greatly appreciated,” Lucas said.