GFFR gives Christmas gifts to children in the hospital - KXLH.com | Helena, Montana

GFFR gives Christmas gifts to children in the hospital

Posted: Dec 24, 2017 3:01 PM Updated:

Great Falls Fire Rescue is keeping tradition alive and bringing joy to children in the hospital over the Christmas holiday.

GFFR coordinated with nurses at Benefis Health System to learn how many kids are in the hospital as well as some of their interests.

On Sunday, firefighters visited Great Falls stores to purchase Christmas gifts for the kids.

The firefighters plan to deliver the gifts on Sunday evening.

According to firefighter Kris Whitaker, the event is about bringing happiness to those less fortunate during the holidays.

"We try to find time-consuming things, books, things they can read," he said. "It's just a special day to go up there and try and do just a little bit of good in the world."

Whitaker added that nail polish was a highly requested item.

GFFR purchases the gifts with money raised throughout the year.

The event is not the only Christmas occasion GFFR is involved in. 

Since 2008, Great Falls Fire Fighters Local 8 has hosted "Paul's Holiday Wish" in honor of their fallen brother Paul Erickson.

Paul Erickson died at the age of 33 in a Mercy Flight crash in 2007. In addition to Paul, two other people died in the crash near Belgrade: Vince Kirol, the pilot; and Darcy Dengel, a nurse.

He was a member of the Great Falls Fire Rescue family and known to many as a generous guy.

Through "Paul's Holiday Wish," GFFR delivered Christmas baskets to 23 families. 

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