FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
The GFFF hits $ 3 Million!
The PSOB approved LODD benefits for another family being assisted by the Georgia Fallen Firefighters Foundation this week. This approval brings the total amount of benefits received by families through the foundations efforts to $3,205,590.73.
The foundation has assisted a total of 17 families from three states since 2010 and staff is still working with nine of those families in the application process.
By utilizing the foundation for assistance the family’s burden in the difficult and cumbersome application process is minimized to every extent possible while the all volunteer foundation staff advocates on behalf of the family throughout the entire process, which can take as long as three years. Additionally, and most importantly the foundations assistance comes with absolutely no expense to the family, they receive 100% of the benefit and all expenses related to the application process are covered by the foundation.
In honor of Firefighter Appreciation day GFFF Chairman Dennis Thayer and surviving family members Kathy Nielsen, Lynn Brown and Justin North pose for a photo before the game between the Atlanta Braves and the Oakland Athletics at Turner Field on August 17, 2014 in Atlanta, Georgia. The Braves won the game 4-3.
While we clearly know cancer in the fire service is a national issue, until now no concentrated effort has been undertaken here in Georgia to determine how big of a local issue this really is. The Georgia Fallen Firefighters Foundation is taking the lead in gathering data from Georgia’s Fire Service regarding the incidences involving firefighter cancer diagnosis as well as cancer related deaths. The information gathered will be very useful: First, it will be utilized to determine if further research specific to our state or region should be conducted. Secondly, it will be helpful in obtaining a clearer picture of the financial burden under the current health care system, as well as the potential burden if presumption legislation did exist. And finally it will assist by providing hard data for state legislators who are actively pursuing presumptive legislation on our behalf.
"Lighting the Way"
The days, weeks and months following a LODD are some of the darkest times for both the family and the department of a lost firefighter. Finding your way out of this darkness can be difficult and painful. The Foundation was created to assist both individual family members and the fire department family by providing programs and services that begin the very first day and extend through the funeral and beyond. The goal of the Foundation is to provide the pathway out of the darkness, in essence the Foundation is “lighting the way” to recovery.
Since the inception in 2009, the Georgia Local Assistance State Team (L.A.S.T.) has assisted LODD surviving family members receive $3,205,590.73 in State and Federal benefits. and currently is assisting in $2,698,462.23 in active benefit applications.