Nipawin Fire Department July 2018 – Nipawin Firefighter Darcy McKinnon and Deputy Chief Bruce Pihowich recently accepted a case filled with Fire Department Challenge Coins from Bezanson Volunteer Fire Department Station Captain Harold Bulford.
Nipawin Fire Chief Brian Starkell had earlier been contacted by Captain Bulford, who explained that his fire station located east of Grande Prairie, Alberta, wanted to do something for the Fire Departments in Tisdale, Nipawin, Zenon Park and Humboldt to show support in the aftermath of the Humboldt Broncos crash, and requested contact details for each department. Chief Starkell obtained permission from the chiefs of all the departments to provide their contact details to Captain Bulford, who in turn visited each department and presented each with a case filled with coins.
After the Bezanson Department put out the call to nearby departments, in Alberta, asking for coins, 34 departments gave coins and 3 gave shoulder patches. Captain Bulford stated that they wanted the members of the Tisdale, Nipawin, Zenon Park and Humboldt departments to know that they are not alone and have support from the brotherhood.
Challenge coins are a military tradition that is given to young officers as a challenge to do better in their service. The coins now are shared among different emergency service departments as a sign of camaraderie and support.