Western Manitoulin families make generous donations to fire department bush buggy fund

Laurie and Mike Addison, left, and Sharon and John Lloyd each made donations of $2,500 toward the Robinson Township fire department’s bush buggy (UTV) fund. photo by Tom Sasvari

SILVER WATER – Two Western Manitoulin families have made significant donations toward the Robinson Township fire department bush buggy (UTV) fund.

John Lloyd and his wife Sharon (Addison-Lloyd), who have a cottage in Silver Water and a home in Gore Bay, and Mike and Laurie Addison of Gore Bay, made donations recently to the Robinson Local Services Board (LSB).

“We feel connected to the community, and everything just fell into place to make this contribution,” Mr. Lloyd told The Expositor recently.

“My daughter had seen a story referring to the fundraising campaign, that the Gore Bay Rotary Club had donated $1,000 towards the fire department’s bush buggy fund,” Mr. Lloyd said. “I was thinking, this would be a perfect thing for us to help contribute to as well. So, I called Tim Mackinlay (who is chair of the LSB and a member of the fire department) and let him know we were interested in helping out. He told me at the time, the LSB was about $5,000 short in raising funds for the bush buggy.” The Lloyds donated $2,500 toward the fire department bush buggy fund. 

Mr. Lloyd pointed out that his wife Sharon is originally from Silver Water. “We have a cottage here. We love it out here. We just felt it would be nice to contribute to the community in some way, in kind or through a donation like this.”

The estate of Ron and Betty Addison matched the contribution with another $2,500 in their memory.

Mike Addison explained, “when the fire department was started in Robinson Township, both my parents signed up and became members of the fire department.”  Ron Addison served on the fire department for over 25 years and only retired due to health reasons.

“Laurie and I had decided to make a donation in memory of my parents, Ron and Betty,” said Mr. Addison. 

“Because of the generous Rotary Club donation, it has spurred other people to come forward to contribute,” continued Mr. Addison.

The cheque presentations were made to Robinson Township fire chief Doug Wismer and Robinson LSB chair Tim Mackinlay.

Mr. Mackinlay had told The Expositor previously, “the UTV is equipped with all the tools a forest firefighter would need, including a fixed Honda pump, a high-pressure forestry pump, a high-pressure forestry pump and 600 feet of forestry hose. The trailer also carries 80 gallons of water, two backpack pumps and 200 feet of hose. In addition, there is a chainsaw for cutting fire breaks or downed trees blocking access.”

Mr. Wismer had told The Expositor previously, “this fully outfitted UTV bush buggy will help the department to address grass and forest fires in locations that are just not accessible with the larger fire vehicles. Our goal is to be able to respond quickly and efficiently to fires in remote locations to protect the homes and properties of our residents.”