Casper Fire Department Overwhelmed with Donations

 
by Taylor Viydo, tviydo@k2tv.com 
 
In the face of the crisis presented by the Sheep Herder Hill Fire, an outpouring of community support. 
 
Monday morning, the Casper Fire Department asked for donations of food and water for it's firefighters. "Our firefighters need a lot of resources to keep their nutrition up and to keep hydrated," said Fire Chief Mark Young. The department also asked for volunteers to help take in the donations at Fire Station 3. 
 
The department asked, and Casper answered. 
 
"We've got hundreds and hundreds of cases of water," said Young standing in front of not only water, but stacks of Gatorade as well. Residents also donated hundreds of snacks ranging from granola bars, to crackers and candy bars. Some even donated large buckets of home-made chili and goulash. 
 
"I left the [emergency operations center], I walked out and said 'Wow'," said Young in response to the support. By Monday evening, Young had to ask for no more donations due to the overwhelming support.
 
Young adds that he had heard that stores like Walmart and Sam's Club were "slammed" with customers buying cases of water and other goods to donate. "Knowing what we had already, we had to call up Sam's Club and say 'would you please go on the [public address] and say 'Thanks, but no thanks.''" said Young. 
 
Young says he was also surprised by the amount of volunteers that showed up to help at Fire Station 3. "I've been stacking water, taking it up to Hat 6 [road]," said volunteer Ryne Cooper. "I feel like it's something I'm supposed to do. I did the Marine Corps...helping people out is what I like doing." By donating his time at Fire Station 3, Cooper is a strong example of what it means to live in Casper. 
 
"I feel that the community is extremely tight," said volunteer Robert Falber, Jr. "Everybody worries about everybody else." 
 
Chief Young, still looking at the hundreds of donated bottles of water, couldn't agree more. Young says, "It's just so reassuring to know that our neighbors are there for us."