MDA and Mesa County Fire Fighters to Kick Off Annual Fill the Boot Campaign

Grand Junction CO, August 26, 2019 — The Grand Junction Professional Fire Fighters, the Grand Junction Fire Department, and fire fighters in Mesa County and surrounding areas are showing their continued support for the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) as they kick off the annual Fill the Boot fundraising campaign to raise critical funds to help transform the lives of kids and adults with muscular dystrophy, ALS and related muscle-debilitating diseases.

A kick-off event is scheduled on Monday, August 26th at 10:00AM at Grand Junction Fire Station 1, 625 Pitkin Avenue. Local families living with muscle disease, Mayor Taggart, Vice President Engbarth of the Grand Junction Professional Fire Fighters Union, Chief Watkins of the Grand Junction Fire Department, Chief Balke of Clifton Fire Protection District, and fire fighters from surrounding Mesa County fire departments will all be in attendance to help kick-off this time-honored tradition.
Continuing a 65-year tradition of giving strength to the MDA community, dedicated fire fighters in Western Colorado will hit the streets or storefronts with boots in hand asking pedestrians, motorists, customers and other passersby to make a donation to MDA starting on Thursday, August 29th and continuing through Labor Day.

“We are thrilled to be working with the Grand Junction Fire Department and all of the departments in the surrounding areas, for another year of Fill the Boot to help provide the funds needed to find treatments and cures for muscular dystrophy, ALS and related diseases that severely limit strength and mobility,” said MDA Development Director, Kendall Montagriff. “The dedication of these fire fighters to MDA’s mission is unwavering, spending countless hours both with Fill the Boot and MDA Summer Camp to care for the kids and adults in Colorado. We know that their devotion to our families will make this year’s drive a success.”

Funds raised through the Mesa County Fill the Boot events in 2019 will help the MDA save lives and lift those up in need, by providing the MDA with vital resources to advance their mission of driving innovations in science and care for the neuromuscular community. Contributions have helped fund groundbreaking research and life-enhancing programs such as state-of-the-art support groups and Care Centers, including the MDA Care Center at Children’s Hospital Colorado and University of Colorado Hospitals.

They also help send more than 90 local kids to “the best week of the year” at MDA summer camp at Rocky Mountain Village in Empire, CO – all at no cost to their families.

In addition to Fill the Boot drives, fire fighter contributions from year-round local events, including the MDA Night at the Colorado Rockies game on Monday, September 2nd will help support MDA’s efforts to raise awareness and provide professional and public education about neuromuscular diseases.

 MDA and IAFF Partnership

The partnership between the IAFF and MDA began in 1954 when the organization committed by proclamation to support MDA until a cure is found, and the organization’s unwavering commitment to MDA has remained strong to this day. As MDA’s largest national partner, they have raised more than $650 million for the MDA to date. Today the IAFF/MDA partnership is finding new ways to save lives by working to expand newborn screenings in the U.S. with Pompe disease or Spinal Muscular Atrophy (SMA), so that they can be immediately eligible for lifesaving and life changing therapies.

About the IAFF

The International Association of Fire Fighters represents more than 300,000 professional fire fighters and paramedics who protect 85 percent of the nation’s population. More than 3,200 affiliates and their members protect communities in every state in the United States and in Canada.

About MDA

MDA is committed to transforming the lives of people affected by muscular dystrophy, ALS and related neuromuscular diseases. We do this through innovations in science and innovations in care. As the largest source of funding for neuromuscular disease research outside of the federal government, MDA has committed more than $1 billion since our inception to accelerate the discovery of therapies and cures. Research we have supported is directly linked to approved, life-changing therapies across multiple neuromuscular diseases. We support the largest network of multidisciplinary clinics providing best-in-class care at more than 150 of the nation’s top medical institutions, and each year thousands of children and young adults learn vital life skills and gain independence at MDA Summer Camp and through recreational programs. For more information visit


MDA: Kendall Montagriff                      Grand Junction Fire: Ellis Thompson

Development Director                                                        Community Outreach Specialist

970.210.1119                                                                      970.549.5858