Big Mountain Fire Department Receives Major Donation for New Truck

Texas couple building home on Big Mountain gives $600,000

By Justin Franz

A Texas couple building a home along the slopes at Whitefish Mountain Resort has given $600,000 so the Big Mountain Fire Department can purchase a new fire truck.

The Big Mountain Firefighters Association announced that the department would purchase a 2017 fire truck that will help them better respond to fires. In 2017, a slope-side home burned and firefighters struggled to contain it, even with help from other departments, because of the size of the building and prevailing winds.

Ben DeVall, Big Mountain Fire Chief and the BMFA president, said that 87 percent of the fire district’s budget goes to the payroll so funding large capital improvements is hard.

The Texas couple, Robyn and Mark Jones, said that while they are new to the community they want to make sure local first responders have the tools that they need.

“We are extremely grateful for this generous gift from the Joneses,” said Rhona Meislik, treasurer of the firefighters association. “The fire department must be properly equipped to fight fires that start on Big Mountain.”

The new truck is expected to arrive this summer.

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