Penns Valley

On Centre | Penns Valley: Auxiliary offers helping hands to Centre Hall Fire Company

The Centre Hall Fire Company is run by more than just its firefighters.

With approval from the department, Jenn Tice, company photographer, started its auxiliary to help with daily operations.

Tice said the auxiliary is made up of about 15 residents served by the company who wanted to be members of the department, but didn’t want to be active firefighters.

“We have our firefighters’ backs and do what needs to be done to help them raise money, stay safe and continue to serve the community,” Tice said.

The auxiliary was officially started in September after months of planning, organizing and working with fire company members, Tice said.

“I see every day what the firemen go through,” she said. “Not only do they drop their lives at a moment’s notice to go help someone they probably don’t even know, but they go through hundreds of hours of training, spend Monday nights at the station keeping the trucks stocked, kept up and ready to go, and they have to organize fundraisers to be able to cover the costs of operation.”

Within the auxiliary is a Rehab Team that also “goes into action as soon as a call goes out,” Tice said.

Each auxiliary member has a job that includes calling local businesses to get food for the firefighters, someone to go to the station and start making coffee and warm drinks, and more. The group then transports the food and drinks to the crew on scene.

“Being the fire company photographer, I respond to as many calls as I can,” Tice said. “Being there and watching our firemen brave subzero (temperatures) to save someone’s home at 3 a.m. made me realize that they needed our support in another way.”

She said that some fires and accidents can take up to eight hours to clear and the firefighters are not able to take a break to get something to eat or drink.

“We assure that all firemen are taken care of at all times,” Tice said.

But the auxiliary takes care of fundraisers, as well.

A spaghetti dinner will take place March 28 at the Centre Hall Legion, 2928 Penns Valley Pike, .

At noon on May 17, Grange Fair Bingo will also be held at the Grange fairgrounds. Tickets are $25. The first 300 will be admitted.

And the auxiliary is also looking for more members. The group meets at 6:30 p.m. the first Wednesday of every month at the station, 9270 N. Pennsylvania Ave., Centre Hall.

For more information, email Tice at jtice@centrehallfireco.com.

“We do a lot of work for the fire company, but we also have a lot of fun,” Tice said.

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