By Blenda Copeland
The Phenix City Fire Department has for the 12th time of 13 years won the Golden Axe award for raising the most money for the Muscular Distrophy Association (MDA) in its fire service population.
The department raised $35,916 this season. Overall since 2010, the department helped raise more than $245,000 and by Fire Chief Kris Kennedy’s estimation, likely more than $400,000 since 2005, which comes to an average of around $30,000 a year.
The award was presented to Kennedy and the department at the Phenix City Council meeting Feb. 21.
The woman who presented the award noted that the cost is about $100,000 to fund one research grant to help find and test new potential drugs for MDA. Putting that into perspective, that means the fire department helped raise a little more than one third the cost of one grant.
During her comments, the fire chief expressed gratitude to local Piggly Wiggly and Walmart stores and others for their gracious support of the fill the boot campaign for the MDA fund-raising. She also recalled the heart-warming story of one woman who put three $100 bills into the boot, and after a firefighter caught up with her to inquire whether that was an accident or intentional, she iterated that she did indeed mean to donate the $300.