‘Holding my own’
The community is rallying behind Randy Robertson, a Lancaster volunteer firefighter who is recovering from serious injuries he sustained in a highway accident earlier this month.
The South Glengarry Station 4 Firefighter Association will hold a fundraising spaghetti supper and silent auction for the 51-year-old February 21 at Lancaster’s Royal Canadian Legion Hall from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m.
People can also make a donation by sending it to South Glengarry Station 4., Township of South Glengarry, 6 Oak Street, P.O. Box 220, Lancaster, ON. K0C 1N0.
“Holding my own”
Randy Robertson spoke to The News from his bed at Ottawa Civic Hospital February 9.
Sounding weak but alert, Mr. Robertson said: “I am holding my own.” He added no operations are planned but he will have a slow long journey to a full recovery.
He was hurt February 6 when the tanker truck he was driving overturned on a slippery section of Highway 401 while he was responding to an accident. He was the lone occupant in the vehicle.
South Glengarry Fire Chief Vic Leroux said all funds received will be given to Mr. Robertson’s family for his care. “It’s for the various expenses the family may incur over his recovery time.”
Firefighters are family
Mr. Leroux planned to visit Mr. Robertson last week. “We look at the firefighters as family and when there is a member of our family that is in need, then we come to our member’s aid,” he said. “That can be in any financial or spiritual way, or just being there for someone to talk to and listen to.”
Mr. Robertson suffered a head injury, punctured lung, broken ribs, and injured his collarbone and lower back. He was on his way to water-rescue training but changed direction to respond to a call for service on Highway 401, west of Lancaster.
“I remember getting into the tanker, because that is what I usually drive. Then, when I was driving, all I can remember, it’s almost like a shiver or something, something made me come off balance. That’s all I remember.”
Fellow firefighters who were also en route to the scene of the earlier accident saw his
“We look at the firefighters as family.”
– CHIEF VIC LEROUX –
vehicle had rolled and responders stopped to use the “Jaws of Life” to extricate him. The truck had crushed its driver’s side when it flipped in a 360-degree roll.
The fire department will be able to replace the tanker truck through its insurance coverage.
South Dundas firefighter Cole Veinotte posted on South Glengarry’s Facebook Page his support for Mr. Robertson, saying he
also responded to a call on Highway 401 on February 6. Mr. Robertson’s accident “hit close to home,” he said.
“It could have been me in trouble,” he observed, adding he wished Mr. Robertson “a speedy recovery” and hopes everyone stays safe.
As of last week, Mr. Robertson was still feeling too dizzy to be able to sit up or try walking. He will be receiving physiotherapy to help in his recovery.
Mr. Robertson returned home Monday.
His partner, Debbie Julien, said doctors anticipated it may take him four to six months to recover.
He is “a very healthy man” and doesn’t drink or smoke, uses weights and is “very athletic,” she added.
“The doctors said he has that on his side. That is what’s going to help him.”
Mr. Robertson is bolstered by the community’s kindness and thanks everybody who sent their get-well wishes. “People are saying a lot of good stuff, “he said. “I appreciate that and I will do my best to get better.”
HELP FOR FIREMAN: Lancaster firefighter Randy Robertson has returned home after spending eight days in the Ottawa Civic Hospital recovering from injuries sustained in an accident February 6.
FAMILY DAY: Once again, Alexandria’s Island Park was the place to be on Family Day as families from all around Glengarry and area converged there for an afternoon of Winter fun. Clockwise from left: Brandon Brunet, Adam Barton, Dakota Baker, all of Alexandria, donned Flames jerseys during the three-on-three hockey tournament. Their team name: The Jagr Bombs. Lisa and Ryan Becker brought their children, Trent, 5, and Kira, 7 months. Sophia Spencer, 7, of Alexandria, did some oldfashioned marshmallow roasting at the festival. The horse-drawn wagon ride was also a big attraction on Monday afternoon.