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A Time of Thanksgiving

A time of Thanksgiving crosses borders, cultures, and generations and is not limited to the month of November.

It was about this time last year when the U.S. Hispanic Contractors Association (USHCA) was in Saltillo and while visiting with City officials, recognized the need for a fire truck in the city. Understanding how a fire truck could save lives, as well as mitigate property and financial loss, the USHCA undertook a year-long negotiation to secure this critically needed equipment for the City.

Fast forward to October 27, 2023, with the generous donation from Martin-Siddons Emergency Group, a magnificent red fire engine truck manufactured by Pierce Trucking in Houston was presented and delivered for the City of Saltillo. The presentation of the clear and free title to this truck was a moment of true Thanksgiving for all involved to make this donation a reality.

It took a village to complete the donation to accompany the fire truck. Due to the amazing generosity of many fire departments from across our great state, multiple trailer loads of firefighting equipment including tanks, masks, helmets, and uniforms were also donated.

After the honor of a blessing of the fire truck, the many individuals involved in emergency services and the membership of the USHCA by the Most Reverend, Bishop Tamayo, a celebratory meal of the finest Texas BBQ was enjoyed by those accompanying the USHCA to the City of El Paso to present this gift. Our amazing benefactor of the fire truck, Pat Siddons and Leon Martin of Martin-Siddons Emergency group, along with Retired City of Austin Police Chief Joseph Chacon, Austin Fire Chief Joel Baker, Austin EMS Chief Robert Luckritz, and our esteemed guests from Saltillo including City Manager Carlos Estrada, Saltillo's Fire Chief Alberto Neira, Fire Union President Alejandro Siller and several of their Council Members including Council Member Jorge Alberto Leyva Garcia, Chairman of the committee on Public Security and Public Transportation, enjoyed the spirit of Thanksgiving to celebrate this momentous occasion.

The City of El Paso presented us all with such a warm and generous welcoming that this day of Thanksgiving is one we will remember for ages to come. The ability to work across borders, cultures, and generations in support of our public servants as they protect and serve is a gift of which to truly be thankful for.

As we approach the celebration of Thanksgiving this month, let us include our own hometown heroes at the City of Austin for their leadership and support in endeavors such as allowing emergency service professionals to work with the USHCA to support not only our own but those in our Sister City. The support we receive for the work of our Association is much for which we are truly thankful.





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