Money raised goes to support area cancer patients and families

Havelock Fire and Rescue Department has kicked off its annual Brave Enough to Wear Pink T-shirt campaign to raise money to support sufferers of breast cancer and other cancers.

“I think it’s a good cause and I think everyone is proud to support it,” said firefighter/paramedic Charlie Winter.

Money raised during the sales effort goes toward the Havelock Fire/Rescue Cancer Care Fund, which is managed by the CarolinaEast Foundation.

“Obviously we go out day in and day out helping people as much as we can,” said Winter. “Last year the department sold more than 1,000 of the shirts.

“All that money has gone just for people here in eastern North Carolina. I think people just get behind the fire department this time of the year, to be honest with you. We have really, really good community turnout.”

The shirts went on sale on Monday.

“We’re open, we’re available and we’re ready to do business,” Winter said. “We’re ready to get it done.”

The $20 shirts are available at the West End Fire Department near Tucker Creek, as well as at city hall and at the East End Fire Station. Shirts can be ordered online through the city’s website at www.havelocknc.us. The shirts are available from infant sizes to 4X.

The best times to come by to purchase a shirt is from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday, though sometimes no one will be available to sell a shirt if personnel are responding to a rescue call. Shirts can be reserved by calling the fire department business line at 444-6443.

“We’re ready to sell if you’re ready to buy,” Winter said.

Boardwalk Screen Printing and Embroidery in Morehead City made the shirts.

“They actually helped us out a lot with the design,” Winter said. “They actually came up with the idea of it. With it being an election year, they thought something patriotic would be good, so that’s why we came up with the American flag.”

On the back of the shirts is a rough representation of the American flag with “Havelock Fire and Rescue Department Brave Enough to Wear Pink 2016” written within the horizontal bars. In place of stars are emblems, including the breast cancer pink ribbon, the EMS Star of Life, the Marine Corps Eagle, Globe and Anchor and the crossed axes for the fire department.

“October has come to be that month where we come through and we shine,” said Winter. “That is the month where we try to do the most good that we possibly can. People love the fire department and we obviously love the community. I think it is a good mix of both of them coming together and helping each other as much as we can to help out.”

Winter said it’s the one time of year where everybody understands the cause.

“We’re not making any money off of it,” said Winter. “All that money goes strictly to people who are battling cancer, and it’s hard to find someone nowadays who doesn’t know someone or has someone that they know or they love that has had cancer so this is a really good thing to get behind.

“Every year we have a map that we set up and every time we get an order online, we put a little tack in that state, so whenever someone comes into the fire department to see where it is that we’re sold to, they are more than welcome to. People can see what states we’ve sold to and what states we’ve got left to go.”