MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — The Star City Volunteer Fire Department is calling on the community they serve to help them repair a donated pumper truck.

A new Square donation account has been set up on the department’s Facebook page, where they look to gather up to $15,000 to fix the engine on the fire truck. This would allow the department to be able to respond to emergency calls without having to spend potentially $700,000 on a new truck while they deal with financial struggles that have affected volunteer fire departments across the Mountain State.

“After having a mechanic take a look at the engine, it was estimated that there was going to be a repair cost of about $15,000–$18,000,” said Star City Volunteer Fire Department Board of Trustee and firefighter Joe Klass. “So we have set up a Square account on our Star City Volunteer Fire Department Facebook page, and we are reaching out to our community to try to help,” he said.

According to Klass, the donated fire truck is only in need of engine repairs before it will be ready to serve the Star City community. The truck was donated to the Star City Volunteer Fire Department courtesy of the Terry Farrell Firefighters Fund, which offers gear, tools, and large-scale equipment to volunteer fire departments from across the country.

The fire truck still in working condition, but on the trip back to Star City from New York the engine on the truck blew.

“You know, the truck is a used truck, but the body of the truck itself appears to be in pretty good working order,” said Klass. “It’s actually in a lot better shape than our two current fire apparatuses, the only issue is that as we were driving the vehicle back, the engine actually gave out,” he said.

Once the fire truck becomes operational, it will serve as the Star City Volunteer Fire Department’s primary vehicle for emergency response. According to Klass, both of the other vehicles used to respond to emergency calls are on their proverbial last legs, which makes the need for fundraising that much more vital. If parts for a new engine are procured for the donated truck, it will allow the department to extend the life of their emergency vehicles for at least a few years.

“Our two current apparatus are one mechanical problem away from being out of service permanently,” said Klass on WAJR’s Talk of the Town. “So our plan was to get this truck in service to take the wear and tear off our current apparatus.”

The Star City Volunteer Fire Department serves an average of about 1,000 calls a year that range from simple emergency response to immediate life-saving care. The calls are manned by close to thirty-five department members, some of whom have been a part of the community their entire lives. The department also continues to make efforts outside of the establishment of a Square account on Facebook, such as ongoing communications with state and local leaders to explore funding opportunities. In the meantime, Klass hopes the community can come together and help the department continue to help in times of need.

“Our department is running over 1,000 calls a year, that puts a lot of strain on our equipment,” said Klass. “So you know, any chance to get the word out and also talk to people who may have solutions, I think that’s kind of our long-term strategy here,” he said.

Anyone wishing to donate to the Star City VFD towards the new engine or for other uses is encouraged to call 304-599-1539 or reach out to their Facebook page.