The Rochester Hills Fire Department elected to wrap its “Alpha 23” vehicle in a pink breast cancer awareness wrap for the first time this month.

The Rochester Hills Fire Department elected to wrap its “Alpha 23” vehicle in a pink breast cancer awareness wrap for the first time this month.

Photo provided by the Rochester Hills Fire Department


Rochester Hills Fire Department joins in breast cancer awareness efforts

By: Mary Beth Almond | Rochester Post | Published October 23, 2019

Advertisement

ROCHESTER HILLS — In an effort to bring awareness to the dangers of breast cancer, Rochester Hills firefighters can be seen sporting pink badges and T-shirts, or even driving pink vehicles, this month.

Rochester Hills Fire Chief Sean Canto said the department, in partnership with International Association of Fire Fighters Local 3472, has long shown support for breast cancer awareness by allowing its staff to purchase T-shirts with breast cancer awareness ribbons to be worn throughout October and donating the proceeds to charity.

This year, 215 T-shirts have been sold — with $824 going to the New Day Foundation for Families, which provides emotional and financial help for families going through cancer.

This is the first time that firefighters have decided to purchase pink badges to wear in October. The department also elected to wrap its “Alpha 23” vehicle in a pink breast cancer awareness wrap this month.

“We were trying to do something a little different and support the community, and that was the idea we came up with,” Canto said.

Breast cancer is the second-leading cause of death in women, according to the National Breast Cancer Foundation, which says 1 in 8 women will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime.

Rochester Hills Fire and Life Safety Educator John Lyman said early detection, via a mammogram, is the key to avoiding the disease.

Lyman’s wife was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2005, which was detected through a mammogram.

“Early detection is what’s going to save lives,” Lyman said. “My wife had breast cancer in 2005, and it was early detection for her. She was getting mammograms very early on because her mom and her two aunts both had it, so she started getting mammograms when she was 25 or 26.”

Lyman said his wife underwent a mastectomy and has been cancer-free ever since.  

“The medical aspect of it and having to be home caring for my wife during that time was trying. It was hard on her. She was in a lot of pain, but we worked through it together, and we are on the other side, stronger and better than ever,” Lyman said.

The Fire Department, according to Lyman, believes it’s important to raise awareness of the need for mammograms.

“We want to keep our residents safe here, and we believe that prevention and early detection is what’s going to save lives,” he said.

Rochester Hills firefighters will play in a charity hockey game against the Rochester Police Department at the Onyx Ice Arena in Rochester Nov. 2 to benefit the New Day Foundation for Families. The second annual Guns and Hoses hockey game festivities begin at 7 p.m., and tickets will be available at the door for $10 per person. Children under 5 get in for free. Tickets can also be purchased online at www.eventbrite.com/e/face-off-for-cancer-charity-hockey-game-tickets-67546614743.

For more information about the hockey game, visit www.foundationforfamilies.org/hockey.  

For more information about breast cancer or to donate to fund a mammogram for someone in need, visit www.nationalbreastcancer.org.

Advertisement