Firefighter returns from relief effort

PIQUA — An area firefighter returned this week after helping in the relief effort in Texas during the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey as part of Ohio Task Force 1.

“We were called out on the 24th of August,” Capt. Kevin Ganger of the Piqua Fire Department said.

The task force was in Texas for almost 12 days. They were staged in San Antonio when Hurricane Harvey touched down.

The task force then moved to Rob’s Town, Texas, in the Corpus Christi area, before being staged in Katy, Texas, which is approximately 30 miles west of Houston.

“We helped evacuate a nursing home,” Ganger said. “We helped search areas.”

At one point, they worked to salvage a fire engine that had been stuck underneath a collapsed building.

The task force, which is funded and managed through the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), responded to calls as needed to supplement the local relief efforts. Overall, the task force performed 173 rescues and 40 animal rescues in addition to searching 52 square miles.

By Sam Wildow

Reach Sam Wildow at or (937) 451-3336