Donated fire truck has special meaning for Pelham Fire Department

PELHAM – Fire Chief Tim Honeycutt said the donation of one of its fire tucks holds a special meaning for him and the entire department because it honors the memory of Capt. Steve Holler’s mother.

The Pelham City Council approved the donation of a 1989 fire truck to Pink Heals Central Alabama during a meeting in Monday, June 5. Honeycutt said the water pump on the fire truck no longer operates, therefore the truck can not be utilized by the department.

“We can’t in good conscious sell it to another department because it wouldn’t pass the certified pump test,” Honeycutt said. “This way the truck will still be put to good use traveling throughout the area and helping to uplift people.”

The council declared the truck as surplus personal property before approving its donation to Pink Heals of Central Alabama.

Pink Heals Inc. is a nonprofit national organization made up of public safety officers that partner with public safety entities, local businesses and families to bring communities together, according to its website.

Pink Heals raises the money needed to paint and customize the donated fire trucks. Each donated vehicle is painted pink and named after someone who has battled cancer and inspired others, said Ronald Moorehead, secretary and treasurer of the Pink Heals Central Alabama chapter.

The truck donated by the city of Pelham will be named Diane, after the mother of Capt. Steve Holler who lost her battle with cancer. Diane was also the wife of longtime city of Pelham employee Ken Holler.

“As a department it’s an honor for us to be able to help a volunteer organization like this, and on a personal note, Steve Holler is one of my best friends,” Honeycutt said. “Knowing how much he idolized his mother and the fact that she succumbed to cancer – it’s a personal thing to be able to do this.”

The fire truck being donated also happens to be the same one Steve Holler drove for about 16 years back when he was a driver in the fire department, Honeycutt said.

After the truck is repainted and customized, a dedication ceremony will be held in Pelham. Diane’s family members, city leaders and public will have an opportunity view and to sign the truck.

Rather than focusing on one specific type of cancer, Pink Heals uses the color pink to represent women who are battling or have battled various types of cancer.

Every year the organization hosts a Pink Heals Tour and travels throughout the U.S. in their pink fire trucks visiting individuals.

“It is a program that provides home visits to show individuals that they are loved, cherished and important to others,” the website states. “Pink Heals volunteers visit individuals facing adversity in their home, the hospital or at their place of work to honor their courage, foster hope, and provide them with the love and compassion they deserve.”

Pink Heals Central Alabama was chartered in November 2016 and has about 12 active members, Moorehead said.

“Our goal is to spread love, hope and awareness,” Moorehead said. “That’s what we do.”

The organization can be contacted on Facebook at Pink Heals Central Alabama or Friends of Pink Heals Central Alabama.