One of the things that I truly enjoy about living here in Southwest Missouri are the countless fundraisers that either help people in need or an organization or even a volunteer fire department.

 One of the things that I truly enjoy about living here in Southwest Missouri are the countless fundraisers that either help people in need or an organization or even a volunteer fire department.
Last Saturday, the 59th Annual Wheaton BBQ - sponsored by the Wheaton Volunteer Fire Department - hosted their day-long event in the Wheaton City Park. Aside from the arts and craft vendor booths and the free kids rides, the barbecue was a great hit.
I have covered this event for a number of years and let me tell you, the community backs their fire fighters.
Speaking about firefighters, I want to give a shout out to the Missouri Department of Conservation and their VFA  (Volunteer Fire Assistance) Program grant program. Over the last few weeks, four fire protection districts have received the 50/50 matching grants - Neosho Area Fire Protection District, Diamond, Midway and Goodman Area Fire Protection district A story on Diamond and Neosho Area Fire went into the paper a few weeks ago. A story on Midway is in today's edition and Goodman will follow next week.
These districts' firefighters are volunteers and do a lot for these rural areas. Then the departments have to maintain their maintenance on their trucks, fuel for the trucks and building utilities.
When I was a young kid living in Newtonia, we had a neighbor’s house catch on fire. I remember that the first firefighters on the scene were the Stark City Volunteer Fire Department (now part of Midway Fire District).
So kudos to these firefighters who do so much for you and I in our time of need.






Todd G. Higdon is the managing editor and writes a weekly column. He can be reached at thigdon@ neoshodailynews.com.