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Guest column: RSF Fire Foundation plays vital role in supporting RSF firefighters

The last year has been rough on most everyone, including the members of the Rancho Santa Fe Fire Protection District. 2020 started off with COVID-19, which exposed the district employees to many risks and caused an enormous strain on our firefighters and their family members. As summer came, an extremely busy California fire season had many of our firefighters deployed around the state for weeks at a time. When our firefighters are deployed, we have to back fill their positions to keep our fire stations staffed 24/7. The amount of overtime our crews put in was astounding.

Then in November of 2020, we suffered the loss of one our veteran fire captains who served the district for 31 years. Two months later, in January of 2021, we lost another fire captain, a 30-year veteran, from the effects of COVID-19. These tragedies took the biggest emotional toll our fire family has ever experienced.

Each and every time we suffered a crisis, the Rancho Santa Fe Fire Foundation had our back. When our families were stressed to the max from COVID, the fire foundation gave every member a small gift card as a token of appreciation to buy a takeout meal for our families. When our firefighters were deployed for months on end, the Foundation asked “What do you need to make your lives easier when on the fire line?” When they found out the firefighters needed new hose clamps, funding was provided for 51 new wildland hose clamps.

When we lost two of our brothers, who faithfully served the community for over 30 years each, once again the foundation was right by our side helping with funeral costs and assisting their families with unexpected expenses. This relieved an enormous strain and provided the much-needed support for our people.

Our Fire Foundation is an amazing organization which provides direct support to the firefighters and employees of the Rancho Santa Fe Fire Protection District. I wish to personally thank the foundation, its board members and donors who make this possible. I really don’t know what we would have done without them. The employees of the Rancho Santa Fe Fire Protection District are very grateful for their gracious support during these trying times.

If anyone wishes to see what the fire foundation is about, you can check out their website at rsffirefoundation.org, email the foundation at info@RSF-FireFoundation.org or call 858-367-0856.


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