Local Residents Create Plaques To Recognize First Responders Who Fought Horse River Widlfire

A group of residents are recognizing all the first responders during the Horse River wildfire in a unique way.

A recently discovered fallen log along Tower Road was cut, sanded, and turned into 24 plaques thanking those who helped everyone evacuate the community.

This includes the four local Fire Halls and Emergency Services at Suncor, Syncrude, and CNRL.

“In return you get… you see smiles,” said Lynne Stefanizyn.

The idea came from Val Brayall, while her husband Greg and Randy Stefanizyn oversaw the heavy lifting.

Their friend Mitchell ended up cutting the log with Nest Creations donating lettering for the plaques, while Sign Guru provided a sign which was set up at the downtown roundabout.

Wildfire sign set up at downtown roundabout // Photo via Lynne Stefanizyn

The group also collected donations which they used to provide meals from Surekha’s On The Snye and the Fort McMurray Golf Club to the local Fire Halls.

“To see the pure joy when they receive their packages, it just lifts my day,” added Stefanizyn.

Due to COVID-19, they weren’t able to provide meals for the RCMP detachment, bylaw services, and employees at the Water Treatment Plant.

They are planning to provide meals and coffee once safe to do so.

The group is also providing gift cards to Mitchell’s Cafe to local Alberta Wildfire officers.

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