By Anne Eickstadt

ANNE EICKSTADT PHOTOS Belvidere Daily Republican
Cpt. Steve Johnson and Firefighter Heath Morrall stand by the rescue truck for North Boone Fire District 3 at the Celebrate CommUnity event.


The ladder of a fire truck towered high above the Immanuel Lutheran Church grounds as fire trucks and engines, police cars, booths, bounce houses, and food vendors filled the church grounds while guests’ vehicles filled every space in the parking lot.

“Our goal with Celebrate CommUnity was to bring our community together,” said event coordinator Cathy Dulgar. “We know that for our community to thrive, we need to rely on our first responders and many nonprofit organizations.”

North Boone Fire District 3 was on hand for the event. “This is our main rescue truck,” said Cpt. Steve Johnson. “It carries all our specialty equipment, cutting tools for vehicle extractions, water rescue equipment… plus it acts as our command vehicle.”

“This truck does everything but pump water,” said FF Heath Morrall.

Belvidere Fire was well represented and rescue vehicles were on hand. “We were supposed to have a helicopter on the lawn over there,” said Dulgar, “but they had a call and had to go rescue someone.”

Pink Heals had two pink vehicles here for the community – Sherry the fire truck and Patty the patrol car. Both hold many signatures and have room for more. “We are all volunteers,” said Carol Rebelak. “Pink Heals of Winnebago is a chapter of a national organization that started in Arizona.”

Pink Heals Winnebago County, IL Chapter is a for-purpose, non-profit 501(c)3 organization that raises awareness and funds for

Free books are being offered by Officer Wilgus of the Belvidere Police Dept.

families and non-profit entities that assists in those battling cancer in our community. When you see us at a fundraiser, it means the funds stay local to help those in need. No one in our organization is paid a salary. Pink Heals is operated solely by volunteers and funded by the sale of merchandise and donations.

Pink Heals brings a community together out of Love, not on behalf of a cause or a ribbon, but on behalf of the People. We support men, women and children of Winnebago County in their fight against any cancer. We are truly a movement for the people by the people.

“We raise money for people and families who are battling cancer,” Leslie Orlando said. “All profits go to events, benefits, and home visits. We even use local vendors for our events. The money stays local within the community.”

Pink Heals Winnebago County, Ill. chapter will be hosting a 5K Fun Run/Walk in Martin Park, 5701 Park Ridge Road, Loves Park on Saturday, June 30, 8 to 10 a.m. You can register online at

Some of the other organizations who came for Celebrate CommUnity were CASA of Boone County, 4-H Clubs with Screaming Monkey Robotics, Boone County Conservation District, Boone County Animal Control; Boone County Health Department, and Immanuel Lutheran’s own comfort dogs ministry. Mr. Terry Ressler brought Patience with him for more training. “We have a dog in San Diego right now.” He said. “There are 16 more comfort dogs on their way.”

Officer Wilgus of the Belvidere Police Dept. was also on hand with a table full of books to give away. “We started Badges with Books two years ago,” she said. “ It is great for building good community relations with children. I have given away 100 books already today.

“Our biggest give-away community events are at Halloween when we usually give out 500 to 600 books and Hometown Christmas.

“We are celebrating our community, bringing people together to eat, to play, and to come together,” said Dulgar. “Our carnival games are hosted by 19…

For full article, pick up the May 30 BDR.

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