Come October when hundreds of Turlock residents start donning pink T-shirts, Gregory Asher can point to one and say he made that.
Asher, a 2015 Pitman High School graduate, is the winner of the Turlock Firefighters Local #2434 design contest for this year’s breast cancer awareness campaign.
Asher’s design features fire fighting tools inside the shape of the union’s logo and is emblazoned in pink with a pink cancer ribbon in the center. It also has the slogan “Fighting Cancer with Fire.”
For the last three Octobers the Turlock Fire Department has been exchanging their uniform tops for the pink t-shirts and embarks on a fundraising campaign for the Bill and Elsie Ahlem Cancer Endowment. The effort has generated more than $50,000 in contributions since it began, said Turlock Fire Capt. Frank Saldivar.
“You can’t believe the support we get from the community,” Saldivar said.
For this year’s shirt design the fire fighters turned to the school district, which has been a big supporter of their campaign. The criteria for the students were that the design had to incorporate some aspect of the fire service and should include the pink cancer awareness ribbon. It also needed a theme.
“It was difficult to pick just one design,” said Saldivar.
For his winning design, Asher was given $100 in gift cards to Turlock businesses.
In connection with the fire fighters’ breast cancer awareness campaign is their annual Pink Helmet Award. The award will be to be presented to someone whose life has been touched by cancer and who represents the characteristics of a firefighter— compassion, bravery, honesty, commitment and courage. The purpose of this award is to educate women about the life-saving importance of taking control of their own health to help with the early detection of breast, ovarian and cervical cancer.
Nominations for the Pink Helmet Award are currently being accepted. Nominees must be residents of Stanislaus or Merced counties. Nomination forms can be downloaded and submitted online at www.turlockfirefighters.org through Sept.25. Nominations must be electronically submitted with a completed Entry Form via email to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please use “Pink Helmet” as the subject line for your entry email.
The t-shirts will be available for purchase starting Sept. 18 at the Emanuel Medical Center gift shop. They’ll also be available at Crivelli’s Shirts and More and at the Turlock Certified Farmers’ Market starting Sept. 19 and continuing through Oct. 24. The shirts will also be available online at http://www.turlockfirefighters.org. The cost of the shirt will be $15.