Some of the New York firefighters who came to Donegal last year, during a visit to the Letterkenny fire station.
Twenty firefighters from across Donegal will travel to New York next month to take part in New York City’s St. Patrick’s Day parade.
This follows the visit to Donegal last April by 50 New York firefighters, Eunan Doherty of the Donegal Firefighters Association said.
“Last year’s visit by the New York firefighters to Donegal was a great success and we want to return the favour by accepting their invitation to visit them in New York over the St. Patrick’s Day holiday period,” Eunan said.
Donegal firefighters will also visit Ground Zero, “which will be an emotional moment for all of us when we will be remembering those who lost their lives in the 9/11 atrocity as well as those who are still living with the consequences of that fateful day,” Eunan said.
He said Donegal firefighters want to reflect the generosity New York firefighters showed last year. “When the guys from New York visited last April, they donated a large amount of money to the Letterkenny Community Centre and gave a donation to a local autism charity and we want to do something similar to mirror their wonderful generosity.”
Donegal firefighters are raising funds to donate to the New York Firefighter Burns Centre and the Emerald Isle Immigration Centre.
They are selling tickets in New York for a golfing holiday in Ireland, which includes four nights in Ballyliffin and Rosapena. The winner will be drawn at an event in Manhattan on March 19th.
“There has been a long-standing association between Ireland and the New York Fire Department. Some of the New York firefighters have strong Donegal connections and many are second- or third-generation Irish,” he said. “This visit is about strengthening our relationship and letting them know that we appreciate the sacrifices that they have made.”
Draw tickets are for sale from fire stations across Donegal.