LYONS, Colo. (CBS4) – The town of Lyons was one of the hardest hit when last fall’s devastating flooding ripped through several communities along the Front Range. Among the losses was the town’s fire station, and they’re working to rebuild by hitting the street.
On Sept. 11, 2013, flooding began across Colorado that quickly cut the town of Lyons off from any outside access, leaving volunteer firefighters to complete half a dozen rescues on their own before any help could reach them. Today, 200 people still can’t get back to their homes, and now the fire department needs help.
“I know just my swift water crew alone, we pulled at least three cars, people out of cars who were trapped,” Lyons firefighter Evan Patronik said.
As flood waters destroyed homes and trapped people in Lyons, the town’s fire district lost a brand new $400,000 engine and its second fire station nestled in the foothills along the Little Thompson drainage.
“You can see where the concrete broke off, it was three bays. The third bay is completely gone,” Lyons firefighter Drew Gettel said.
Today the district’s 40 volunteer firefighters continue to work without that station. They plan to rebuild, but need $360,000 to do it. That’s the total remaining cost after contingency funding and FEMA reimbursements run out.
“It’s definitely very Colorado to do this,” Lyons firefighter Victor Oliveira said.
Thanks to Oliveira’s planning and his willingness to coax his buddies, half of the department signed up to run Monday’s Bolder Boulder 10K to raise money for their new station.
Newtown Running chipped in with the sneakers.
“Life has gone on for many people just like most of the time after an event like this, but I don’t think people are aware that we’ve lost a station (and) that there is still a lot of rebuilding up here,” Oliveira said.
“It’s just great exposure and it’s a great way to really kick this off and let people know what we’re doing,” Patronik said.
The firefighters plan to run as a team to kick off a series of fundraising events that they hope brings them closer to their goal without relying on the people of the 66 square-mile district they serve.
“They’re already taxed. This town got really damaged and we don’t want to put that on them anymore than is necessary,” Patronik said.
To donate, visit lyonsfire.org and click on “donate.”
Colorado Floods: How To Help
Last September’s floods have impacted families and communities throughout Colorado, so CBS4 has compiled a list of ways you can support the local communities impacted by the floods.
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