Volunteers man the call station during the Floyd County Emergency and Rescue Squad auction held last week.

The Floyd County Emergency and Rescue Squad’s largest annual fundraiser went well last week, officials report. 

Captain Ritchie Schoolcraft reported that the squad sold 460 items that were donated during a live radio auction that was broadcast between Aug. 7 and Aug. 10 on WQHY (Q95 FM).

Rescue squad volunteers collect donations from local businesses for several weeks prior to this event. Officials said the squad usually sells about 600 items at the auction, but Schoolcraft said even though donations of auction items decreased this year, it appears the squad came close to its annual fundraising goal. Officials try to raise $15,000 to $20,000 during this auction each year, he said. 

He said the final fundraising total would be reported at the squad’s meeting this week. 

He said the auction also helps the community get involved with the squad. 

“This has been one of the hardest years as far as going out and collecting, our members. Everybody works and it’s been tough,” Schoolcraft said. “For everybody’s that given something, we thank you. The ones that couldn’t give, we still thank you because you may have given in the past.”

He thanked all squad members who helped host the event and community members who volunteered. 

Donors contributed a variety of items for the auction this year, including handmade quilts, jewelry, knives, gift certificates and other items. 

Schoolcraft reported that Lifeguard Ambulance donated $2,500 to the squad this year, and the company also donated food for volunteers there on Friday. Rodney Nelson, a regular supporter of the squad, also donated $1,000, Schoolcraft said. 

“This is our main fundraiser for the year, and it helps us fund all of our expenses, our light bill and the fuel,” Schoolcraft said. “It helps us be able to get up in the middle of the night and respond to calls, whether it be a car accident, a lost person or flooding or whatever the call may be. We have to have gas in the trucks. We have to pay insurance. So, it just helps us maintain our equipment.” 

Founded after a school bus wreck that killed 26 children and their bus driver in 1958, the all-volunteer squad has received state and national recognition for its swift water rescue training. 

The squad accepts donations year-round. All donations are tax deductible. 

Tax-deductible donations may be mailed to Floyd County Emergency and Rescue Squad, P.O. Box 681, Prestonsburg, Ky. 41653. Donations may also be dropped off at the squad on Cliff Road or made by calling, (606) 886-8114. 

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