Sunday, May 12, 2024

Volunteers Install Over 120 Smoke Alarms in Ashland, Girardville, and Butler Township Homes, Saving Lives

Over 50 volunteers came together in Girardville, Ashland, and Butler Township on Friday to make homes safer by installing more than 120 smoke alarms as part of the Captain Jason B. Jones Memorial Day of Caring.

Led by the American Red Cross Pennsylvania Rivers Chapter and Rangers Hose Company, volunteers from various entities, including Geisinger/St. Luke’s Hospital, UGI, North Schuylkill students, and local governmental offices, worked to equip 42 homes in with free smoke alarms.   Members of the Ranger's Hose Company from Girardville, and the American Hose Company and Washington Fire Company from Ashland were on hand to assist.

Steve Leauber, Senior Disaster Program Manager at the American Red Cross, expressed confidence in the initiative's potential to save lives, stating, “Undoubtedly we will save a life today. There is no question about it.” The event, known as Sound the Alarm, is part of a nationwide campaign orchestrated by the American Red Cross in collaboration with local partners.

Frank Zangari, Girardville Fire Chief, emphasized the critical importance of functioning smoke alarms in safeguarding lives, urging residents to prioritize safety. "Working smoke alarms save lives. Help us help you stay safe and get out alive," Zangari affirmed during the event.

Peter Brown, Executive Director of the Pennsylvania Rivers Chapter of the Red Cross, highlighted the impact of similar initiatives nationwide, citing over 2,600 lives saved due to the installation of smoke alarms by volunteers.

The event was a part of the Jason B. Jones Memorial Day of Caring, organized by Schuylkill United Way. 

Mike Joyce, Director of Community Engagement at Schuylkill United Way, revealed that over 500 volunteers participated in various service projects across the county, demonstrating a remarkable community spirit.

The Day of Caring, which commemorates the legacy of Captain Jason B. Jones, aims to match volunteers with service projects at Partner Agencies offering health and human services to Schuylkill County residents. Captain Jones, a military hero who made the ultimate sacrifice in Afghanistan, is honored annually through community service initiatives like the Day of Caring.