Leadership group, local realtors partner to bring SAFE benefits to Leavenworth County emergency responders
Leavenworth Leavenworth County has roughly 630 public safety officers.
Thanks to donations from two local Realtors and others, they all now have Surviving Spouse and Family Endowment Fund coverage.
SAFE Executive Director Sonny Wilson spoke and presented shadow boxes to Dan Lynch of Lynch Real Estate and Mike Reilly of Coldwell Banker Reilly and Sons. during lunch Wednesday, May 10, at Ten Penny Restaurant in Leavenworth. Each also received a plaque from public safety officials.
Lynch and Reilly each gave $5,000 toward the SAFE lifetime membership, which means the county’s public safety officials always will be covered through the organization.
First State Bank and Trust and Community National Bank also made contributions that put the goal donations at $11,500. Lynch appreciated the recognition gifts, but said it was an easy decision to donate.
“This wasn’t necessary,” Lynch said about the special lunch. “It was a no-brainer (donating) between the two of us.”
Reilly echoed Lynch’s sentiments, saying he was happy to donate to such a worthy cause.
“Thank you all,” he said.
Wilson said the business owners “really have raised the bar” for donating to the cause. He also said no donation is too big or too small, mentioning one girl’s lemonade stand proceeds going to the organization.
“We can’t thank you enough,” he said. “This is a blueprint for others.”
One of the benefits of SAFE is an immediate $25,000 contribution to the surviving spouse and/or family member of a firefighter, police officer, paramedic and/or EMT killed in the line of duty. SAFE provides coverage to emergency services personnel in the metro area, but, until March, Leavenworth County public safety officials were not covered by the benefit because it required an initial buy-in of $10,000.
To be eligible, a neighboring county must already be in the program. This now opens up the opportunity to Atchison County.
A Southern Leavenworth County Leadership Development Class of 2017 group took on the task of collecting donations with the goal of raising $10,000 and buying in to the SAFE program for its community project.
SLCLD student Dawn Carver of Kansas Secured Title took the lead on the project.
Tonganoxie Fire Chief Jack Holcom said it seemed to be an overwhelming project at times in figuring out how to raise that money. But thanks to a few donors, it’s a reality.
“We took way too long putting packets together,” Holcom said with a laugh.
Holcom, along with Leavenworth County Sheriff Andy Dedeke, Leavenworth City Fire Dept. Deputy Chief Mike Shore and Leavenworth County Emergency Medical Services Dir. Jamie Miller were on hand for the presentation. They also presented Carver and her group a similar plaque at the leadership class’ graduation earlier this month.
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