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Step up for those protecting you and yours

| July 30, 2021 1:00 AM

They are your silent heroes, out of sight, out of mind.

To the degree they're successful, though, you and your property are safe.

We're talking about the legions of firefighters risking their lives every day to keep the blazes all around us from ruining our homes — and our lives.

Some are from your local fire departments. Some are from other local agencies, like the Kootenai County Sheriff's Office, which was quick on the scene to help last Friday when fire broke out near Silverwood Theme Park.

But many are from other parts of the state or even outside Idaho. They're doing battle with the big blazes all around us. And they fight with a fury as if it were their own homes and families they're protecting.

As is now commonplace and concerning, there's a shortage of professional wildfire fighters. Those who are standing up to an angry Mother Nature could be doing so without the numbers they're used to.

These brave souls deserve every bit of help they can get. And that's a lot.

Fortunately, the Idaho Department of Lands has created an easy way for the public to pitch in. The Coeur d'Alene Regional Chamber is helping, as well.

Fire crews need pallet-quantities of water and sports drinks with electrolytes. They also need the use of refrigerator trucks or trailers to pick up ice in the Coeur d’Alene area and deliver it to fire camps.

If you can contribute cases of water and/or sports drinks, you can drop them off at the Chamber, 105 First St. in downtown CDA. Here are the hours:

Monday-Friday — 8 a.m.-5 p.m.

Saturday — 9 a.m.-2 p.m.

Sunday — 9 a.m.-noon

You can also donate by filling out an online form: https://www.idl.idaho.gov/donate/

You can also call 208-334-0294.

Donations can also be delivered to Coeur d’Alene Interagency Fire Cache at 3328 W. Industrial Loop in Coeur d’Alene. The cache is equipped to accept donations and get supplies directly to wildfire crews.

Our region is known for its seemingly boundless generosity. Now's as good a time as any to put it into practice.