Fire Fighters ‘Fill The Boot’ For Muscular Dystrophy Association

By: Melissa Toupin

Lt. Matt Pearson of the Smithfield Fire Department recruited his two young son to help kick off the annual 'Fill-the-Boot' fundraiser Friday. Every dollar goes to help children with muscular dystrophy.

“It's just a wonderful experience to be out there and raising money for kids that need it,” said Pearson.

Firefighters from Rhode Island were on hand to pledge thousands of dollars for the cause. That money will be raised over the next few weeks as fire departments across Southern New England hit the street and ask for your help.

Across the state line the Fall River Fire Department has set a goal of raising $45,000.

“You know Fall River has had some tough days economically but people here continue to give and give generously,” said Fall River fire fighter Jason Burns.

As the fire fighters collect the cash– they were reminded of just how near and dear muscular dystrophy is to their hearts. Nationwide more than a million people are affected by M-D.

“I have a 2 1/2 year old at home,” said Fall River Fire Capt. Jeffrey Bacon. “When he has a cold it breaks my heart. So just the thought of having him come down with any serious ailment is enough to get me out here and raise money.”

Rhode Island firefighters have been collecting for 50-years and have raised more than 1.7 million dollars.

“It's something that we do and will continue to do until a cure is found,” said Joseph Andriole, Vice President of the Rhode Island State Association of Fire Fighters.