Special to the Ely Times by Shadrach Michaels

They are our coworkers, our neighbors, and our friends; for many of us, they are our family members; they are the dedicated men and women of the Ely Volunteer Fire Department and Emergency Medical Services. Since 1906, Ely’s finest have been tirelessly working to preserve the health and safety of our city and the greater White Pine County community. In that time, the EVFD & volunteer EMS has relied on the community to support that mission, through volunteering as members or through financial contributions, these donations ensure well trained and well equipped emergency response crews.

Annual fundraising events put on by the City of Ely Fire Department staff, EVFD, and volunteer EMS members, such as the White Pine County Fair and Horse Races Barbeque, field days in the park, cornhole tournaments, and New Year’s celebrations have been fun community activities for decades, until this year when public safety was placed in front of financial need. 2020 saw no BBQ, no field day in the park, and for the first time in its history, the EVFD is deeply saddened to announce the cancellation of the 114th annual New Year’s Eve Fireman’s Ball.
Another local yearly tradition being placed on hold for the first time since it began in the 1930’s is the EVFD’s “House-toHouse ” fundraiser. For nearly ninety years, Ely Volunteer Fire Department and volunteer EMS crews, along with city staff, parade through each neighborhood in town, with firetrucks and ambulances, to raise awareness and ask for much needed donations. The proceeds from this on-foot procession across the city, and the dollars raised from the Fireman’s Ball, are used to increase training opportunities for members, provide CPR and other trainings for the greater community, supply much needed equipment upgrades, allot the replacement and maintenance of its well used trucks, tools, as well as extend the life of the EVFD facilities, while also collaboratively contributing to the success of outlying community fire Departments.

This year, more than ever, EVFD and EMS are feeling the ‘Covid crunch’ with equipment and personnel needs increasing tremendously amid limited financial resources. Like so many of us in White Pine County, the Ely Volunteer Fire Department is straining to make ends meet during the economic downturn. With reduced opportunities to provide the community social interaction from its organized gatherings, the EVFD needs your support more than ever before to ensure that emergency services can continue to meet the needs of the entire community.

Combatting the pandemic and protecting locals, our businesses, our schools, and our homes takes time, energy, and a devotion that EVFD has provided for one hundred and fourteen years, but only through the support of the community. Consider making the commitment to support your neighbors by joining your local volunteer Fire Department and emergency medical service. Applications are available at the station or online. If you cannot volunteer, contribute, any amount, and your generosity goes towards preserving the steadfast protection of all of us in Ely and throughout White Pine County. Online donations can be made through Paypal via the EVFD website: ​https://elyvolunteerfiredepartment.org​. Or mail a check or money order to: Ely Volunteer Fire Department, 1780 Great Basin Boulevard, Ely, Nevada 89301.

From all of the Ely Volunteer Fire Department members, City of Ely Fire Department staff, we say thank you to each and every citizen of Ely and White Pine County that has and continues to volunteer or contribute to the success of the EVFD. We look forward to serving and protecting this wonderful community for another 114 years. In the meantime, take care of yourself and each other. Happy Holidays and have a safe and joyous New Year celebration.