Buffalo couple raising money for firefighters' families - KOTA Territory News

Buffalo, Wyo couple raising money for firefighters' families

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Amy and Jeff Sawyer own Wahoo Frontier Toppings in Buffalo.  They bought the business when they moved in September from near Prescott, Arizona, the same area where the 19 firefighters who lost their lives while battling a wildfire Sunday were from.

The news filled the Sawyers with a sense of dread.

"Prescott is a small town and we knew that we probably knew some of these people or knew their families," said Amy Sawyer.

Sure enough, they did know a couple of the young men: Wade Parker and Jesse Steed.

"One of the young men was a friend of our son's that played baseball.  His father coached our son," said Amy Sawyer.

"Another friend, his grandson perished in the fire also," said Jeff Sawyer.

"So it really puts a name onto what's going on and makes it personal," said Amy Sawyer.

So they are collecting donations to help the victims' families.

"So being so far away this was a way that we could feel like we were helping," said Amy Sawyer.

They'll collect donations from people who come through their front door through the weekend and then they'll send those donations to the 100 Club of Arizona.

"Which is an organization whose sole purpose is to assist families of fallen public safety officers in Arizona," said Amy Sawyer.

The Sawyers hope this will also educate the Buffalo community, which they say reminds them of Prescott.

"Surrounded by national forest, we're always in the imminent danger of forest fire, especially in the droughts we've been in.  And so we wanted to make sure that the community understood that it could happen to anybody, anywhere," said Jeff Sawyer.

The 19 men were part of the Granite Mountain Hotshots, an elite firefighting crew based in Prescott.

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