By Susan Carroll
This past weekend Orion firefighters were out in full fire gear selling special editions of The Lake Orion Review. The proceeds from the newspaper sales will benefit local families this holiday season.
The December weather was unseasonably warm and dry as the Goodfellows handed out newspapers at several locations throughout the area. They could be seen at Panera Bread on Baldwin Road (in the Baldwin Commons), Hollywood Market on Lapeer Road , CJ’s Sandbar and Sagebrush Cantina, both in downtown Lake Orion.
The Goodfellows, now in their 51st year, originated at Station 3 in Gingellville, and today include all four Orion Township fire stations.
Each year the dedicated firefighters donate their time and energy to kindle the holiday spirit. Last year, the Goodfellows’ efforts helped 23 local families have a happier holiday season.
Firefighters’ boots help protect them from enduring heat and moisture during critical times.
However, over the weekend, the boots provided a vessel used to collect money for the Goodfellows. Each boot was decorated with holiday ribbon, bows and some were embellished with jingle bells.
The organization raises money to help families put meals on the table at Christmas time. The Goodfellows also provide gifts and necessities, such as winter clothes and household staples, so the families can have a merrier Christmas.
“We are trying to do more so we can take in more families,” said Brian Hearns, chapter president of the Orion Goodfellows.
The Orion Township Fire Department hosted its first Run with Fire 5k Run/Walk on Oct. 7, with proceeds going directly to the Goodfellows.
This past January, the Orion Township recognized the Goodfellows as Orion Township’s Citizens of the Month for their efforts to help children in need.
The Goodfellows motto is ‘No child should be without a Christmas.’
On Christmas Eve, the firefighters personally deliver to each of the families. They show up on the families’ doorstep with baskets and gifts in hand and live up to that motto. The baskets are filled with gifts, Christmas dinner and a weeks-worth of staples such as bread and dairy products.
There is still time to help with the Goodfellows holiday efforts by stopping by the Orion Township Fire Department’s Station 3, which is located at 3365 Gregory Road, or by emailing Goodfellow President Brian Hearns at firstname.lastname@example.org.