GONZALES — The Gonzales County Emergency Medical Services (EMS) and Gonzales County Rescue both had a good business week thanks to the generosity of the Gonzales County Health Foundation, Mr. and Mrs. Bill Griffin and other area businesses.
The Gonzales County Health Foundation (GCHF) made two large donations to EMS, the largest being a new 2018 transit ambulance that carried a price tag of $66,275. In addition to the transit ambulance donation, the GCHF presented EMS with a $20,000 check that is going to buy needed communication equipment so that EMS can better interact with 9-1-1 and area police dispatchers.
EMS Director Alan Linebrink was beaming with pride after the presentation was made.
“I am ecstatic and as happy as can be,” Linebrink said after the presentation was made on Friday afternoon of Come and Take It weekend. “This is our first brand new vehicle in years and I can not say enough about how happy we are that this community has come together to help us through the hard times.
‘’My extreme thanks go out to all the people at GCHF who made this happen. Plus, the communications equipment is going to help us respond more quickly to medical emergencies and provide better service. Upgrading our communications equipment was one of my top priorities and GCHF made that happen.”
“The GCHF is here to support the health care industry,” Darren Schauer of the GCHF said. “We were here to help support the Sievers Clinic and the hospital as a whole but we knew there was a need to help EMS, which supports the hospital mission, with the transit ambulance and the communications equipment. We are glad to help out.”
The transit ambulance is important to the business side of operations at EMS, as that is where their largest profit center is. EMS has been under directions from the Emergency Service District board to get their financial house in operating order, and the transport ambulance is the first step in that right direction.
In addition to the GCHF donations, Mr. and Mrs. Bill Griffin stepped forward to donate $2,000 toward the purchase of new uniforms for the employees. The Griffins are the parents of EMT Matt Griffin, who tragically lost his life a few years ago in a traffic accident while on his way to the EMS office.
“As you know, this was one of the things I wanted to do when I first took over as EMS Director,” said Linebrink. “I think I new look and a new attitude will be good for everyone here and in the community.”
On the Rescue side of the operation, three new chain saws were donated by McCoy’s Building Supply, Gonzales Building Center and JGI signs. Accessories to the equipment were included.
New headlights for the rescue vehicles were donated by Crystal and Brad Irle at NAPA of Gonzales, and Clearwater properties donated 20 tourniquets for a new initiative started by Linebrink called Stop the Blood.