Salute to Service: Marion firefighters helping one of their own - KPAX.com | Continuous News | Missoula & Western Montana

Salute to Service: Marion firefighters helping one of their own

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MARION - The volunteers with the Marion Fire Department have been busy providing assistance to Lincoln County for the fires.

They have also been available day or night when calls for assistance come in, but recently they responded to a different kind of call -- the call to help one of their own.

Montana's rural fire departments respond to many types of calls.

"It's a challenge every day. We respond to structure fires, medical fires, and even the wildland calls," Marion firefighter and EMT Matt Sampley said.

Sometimes that call is to help one of their own. 

"Just like the military, we're all brothers in arms, we all wear the badge whether it's law enforcement, fire or military. We all are bound together to support our family," Sampley said.

Fellow firefighter and EMT Shawna Floyd with the Marion Rural Fire Department suddenly lost her husband James to cancer.

"Shawna and James are basically our family, so it's a challenge and when somebody is down we're all around them to help them out and pick them up," Sampley said.

The department has banded together to help support Shawna and her two children through a memorial cancer benefit.

"We've got it all set up with the Canvas Church using their facilities we have been working on getting more donations as far as the Spaghetti and the funds," Sampley said. "We have a pie auction going on as well so we have a lot of people baking multiple pies and we'll have a live auction every hour on the hour."

Volunteer firefighters make up 95% of the crew in Marion and they do this on top of their full-time jobs out of a desire to give back to their communities.

"We're just a giant family and we always strive to make sure everybody is important and if somebody is needing something we're all there to help them out," Sampley said.

The memorial cancer benefit for Shawna Floyd -- in memory James Floyd -- will be held from 5 p.m. until 9 p.m. on Sept..22 at the Canvas Church located on Summit Ridge Drive in Kalispell.

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