S.C. EMS Workers Band Together to Raise Awareness, Money for Cancer - News - @ JEMS.com

S.C. EMS Workers Band Together to Raise Awareness, Money for Cancer

To raise the money, they designed a T-shirt with a former co-worker's radio number on it


Charmaine Smith-Miles, Anderson Independent-Mail | | Friday, June 15, 2012

ANDERSO, S.C. -- The white T-shirts that Debbie Hart's co-workers at Medshore Ambulance Service, and other rescue workers around Anderson County were wearing Thursday meant a lot to her.

To her, the shirt was more than a switch from the usual blue uniform shirt. It was a sign that people still remember her husband, Ron Hart, who died of cancer in 2011.

Ron worked at Medshore Ambulance Service for about 20 years. It's where he and Debbie met, and it's where they married.

His cancer was diagnosed on Nov. 21, 2010. Eighty-three days later, he died. Debbie was able to spend those 83 days with her husband because their co-workers donated paid vacation days.

Now, those same co-workers are raising money to help others affected by cancer, and the T-shirt that they designed to raise the money has her husband's radio number, 212, on it.

"If it weren't for these people here, I wouldn't have made it," Debbie said. "I am just proud that they honored him this way. The fact that he's still being remembered means so much."

Many of the local paramedics and emergency medical technicians have been involved in some way.

Jennifer Saxon, a 17-year veteran at Medshore, organized the T-shirt shirt sale. She's sold 250 shirts so far, and is prepared to order another box. Saxon, whose own father has cancer, said the sale has generated $500 so far.

On Saturday, a team from Medshore will participate in the Walk A Mile in Their Shoes event, being held by Primary Care Associates and Primary Care Aesthetics, at the AnMed Health North Campus.

Nate Thomason, an employee at Medshore, designed the shirts with three of the Medshore employees' radio numbers on them. One of those numbers is for Ron Hart. The other two radio numbers are for Donna Wiles and Ricky Martin.

Wiles and Martin have also fought cancer, and work at Medshore.

On the T-shirt, next to a heart that has those three radio numbers in it is a statement: "Sometimes the families we fight for are our own."

Rescue workers from Oconee County, Pelzer, Iva, Pendleton, Williamston and Medshore's Greenville office have bought the shirts, and many wore them Thursday.

As a group of the paramedics stood outside of the Medshore headquarters on Fant Street Thursday morning, a paramedic with the Pelzer rescue squad rode by. He looked at the group's T-shirts and then looked down at his matching T-shirt and gave them a big grin and a wave.

"Every day of the year, we are divided by our uniform shirts," Saxon said. "But on this one day, when we wear these shirts, we are united for the same cause."

It's the third year that the T-shirt sale has been organized. During the first year, they raised money for Donna Wiles after she had a diagnosis of breast cancer. The second year, they sold T-shirts for the Harts.

Now, Saxon said, they are raising money to benefit the Cancer Association of Anderson, and a memorial that is being built in Gaston, S.C., for the emergency medical personnel who have died across South Carolina.

For Debbie Hart, the other aspect of this gesture from her co-workers that gives her some comfort is that their efforts are doing something to help others affected by cancer. They are helping the people whom she and her husband saw as they made countless trips to the AnMed Health Cancer Center.

Even now, a year later, Debbie remembers one of those faces they saw. A woman sat in a chair at the cancer center. She was bald from her treatments and she was so weak and had no idea how she was going to get home, Debbie said.

The money being donated to the Cancer Association of Anderson will go to help pay for patients' treatments and the gas money they need to go to doctors' office.

"Cancer affects so many people," Debbie said. "You never know who it's going to be. I am hoping people will give so that others can have a better outcome."

Copyright © 2013 LexisNexis, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. Terms and Conditions | Privacy Policy

Connect: Have a thought or feedback about this? Add your comment now
Related Topics: News, cancer

What's Your Take? Comment Now ...

Buyer's Guide Featured Companies

Featured Careers & Jobs in EMS

Get JEMS in Your Inbox


Fire EMS Blogs

Blogger Browser

Today's Featured Posts


EMS Airway Clinic

Improving Survival from Cardiac Arrest Using ACD-CPR + ITD

Using active compression-decompression CPR with an ITD has been shown to improve 1-year survival from cardiac arrest by 33%.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

Philadelphia Fire Department Apologizes for Medic’s Jab at Police

Union head calls photos a slap in the face of officers.
Watch It >

Multimedia Thumb

D.C. Fire and EMS Crews Blame New Technology for Patient’s Death

Delayed response blamed on recurring dispatch problems.
Watch It >

Multimedia Thumb

Suspect Steals, Crashes Maryland Ambulance

One killed, others injured in Prince George’s County crash.
Watch It >

Multimedia Thumb

Tennessee Trench Rescue

Worker pulled from Roane County worksite.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

Time’s Ebola Firefighters

Doctors, nurses and others saluted for fighting virus.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

Car Strikes Manhattan Pedestrians

Seven people hurt when car jumps curb.
More >

Multimedia Thumb

Field Bridge Xpress ePCR on iPad, Android, Kindle Fire

Sneak peek of customizable run forms & more.
Watch It >

Multimedia Thumb

The AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher Conversion Kit - EMS Today 2013

AmbuBus®, Bus Stretcher all-hazards preparedness & response tool
Watch It >

Multimedia Thumb

VividTrac offered by Vivid Medical - EMS Today 2013

VividTrac, affordable high performance video intubation device.
Watch It >

More Product Videos >