‘Hold­ing my own’

The Glengarry News - - Front Page - BY AN­GELA BROWN News Staff

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.

STEVEN WAR­BUR­TON PHO­TOS

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.

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