‘Lakes Area Heroes’ Aims to Return the Favor for Emergency Responders in Need
Emergency responders are the first ones there when a call goes out for help. But who do they call when they’re in need?
The non-profit group Lakes Area Heroes aims to be the answer. They want to return the favor by raising funds to support emergency responders and their families in the Brainerd Lakes Area when they need it most.
Isaiah Moengen, who is a full-time realtor at Woods To Water, runs Lakes Area Heroes in his free time. He’s is familiar with the sacrifices made by emergency responders, as his father worked at the Crosslake Fire Department for 23 years.
“I grew seeing him drop everything at the drop of a hat to save somebody’s life he didn’t even know…it’s that kind of sacrifice that really compelled me to want to give back to those heroes,” said Moengen.
It wasn’t easy at first to find heroes to give to as many did not want to raise their hands for help. Others didn’t want the publicity, making it even harder to raise funds.
Eventually, Moengen would get his first opportunity to give in the public light. Ideal Township’s Fire Chief Craig Wallace was nominated by his colleagues at the fire station to receive $1,000 after recently suffering a heart attack.
“The fire departments in the Lakes Area appreciate what they are doing for responders in need,” Wallace said, “I thank them for what they have done for me and look forward to helping them grow their organization.”
It’s this type of giving that has encouraged others in the join Lakes Area Heroes. Renee Kardell, their director of marketing, is also a volunteer firefighter.
“You’re responsible for being there and being part of the team on those emergency situations, but it’s also this idea and this responsibility of being there for each other outside of the calls,” she said. “Being a part of Lakes Area Heroes, it was just a given…I should be there for the people that I serve with.”
The non-profit has given nearly $3,000 to emergency responders in their first eight months as an organization. More information on Lakes Area Heroes can be found on their Facebook Page.
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