Red Cross, Local Fire Dept. Remember Martin Luther King Dr. by Installing Smoke Detectors

People all over the country are honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in different ways.

Some by doing what the Civil Rights icon loved the most-- helping others. 

The third Monday in January, a day reserved for parades and special memorial services, all aimed at remembering a man who sacrificed for his community. 

For the American Red Cross and Mount Vernon Fire Department, it was a day dedicated to keeping the spirit of helping others alive.

"Just like an angel, they came to my front door."

Thats how Mary McGrath of Mount Vernon described a knock on her front door early Monday afternoon that brought her to tears.

While some may have spent their holiday watching Civil Rights Movement specials, or enjoying a long weekend, the American Red Cross and Mount Vernon Fire Department were hard at work.

Theo Boots, the Executive Director of American Red Cross of Southern Indiana, said “we wanted to take this opportunity as well as to honor his legacy and also install and educate about our home fire campaign."

The goal, to save lives by going door to door testing and installing smoke detectors-- free of charge.

McGrath was on the receiving end of one of the 28 new detectors installed in Mount Vernon.

McGrath said,”they put, checked all my smoke alarms and put one in, new, one new in my home. I'm so proud."

While the choice of holiday volunteer work may seem random, the Red Cross and Mount Vernon Fire Department say its one of the things the Tri-State needs the most.

According to the Red Cross, Indiana is one of the top ten states for home related fire injuries and deaths.

Monday's push, along with many others nation and statewide, are hoping to change that.

With ten documented lives saved already just in the Hoosier state, thanks to past similar campaigns, they have high hopes, and that number may already be growing.

Wes Dixon, Mount Vernon Fire Dept. Chief, said "we had partnered with the red cross here a few months ago with the United Way Day of Caring, and it was not too long after that we actually had one that was activated from smoke in the house and there was a family there with several children. They got out of the house and called the fire department."

Boots said volunteers will also go door to door in Evansville Thursday.

You can also schedule an appointment to get your smoke detector checked, or new one installed, next week.

All you have to do is call the Southern Indiana Red Cross at (812) 471-7200.

Mount Vernon Fire Dept. also offers free smoke detector checks and installation anytime.
 


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