Fire Family Foundation Raises More than $11,000 for 3-Year-Old’s Fight Against Cancer

Fire Family Foundation Raises More than $11,000  for 3-Year-Old’s Fight Against CancerFire Family Foundation Raises More than $11,000  for 3-Year-Old’s Fight Against CancerFire Family Foundation Raises More than $11,000  for 3-Year-Old’s Fight Against CancerFire Family Foundation Raises More than $11,000  for 3-Year-Old’s Fight Against CancerFire Family Foundation Raises More than $11,000  for 3-Year-Old’s Fight Against CancerFire Family Foundation Raises More than $11,000  for 3-Year-Old’s Fight Against Cancer

STAFF REPORTS | Photos Courtesy of BRENDA REES

11:19 am | December 16, 2014


More than $11,000 was raised when hundreds of hungry patrons came out on Thursday, Dec. 4 to Robin’s Woodfire BBQ in Pasadena to support a 3-year-old girl battling cancer and her family.

Ten fire departments, 15 engine houses and numerous firefighters arrived to the daylong fundraising event, which saw fire trucks filling the parking lot. Firefighters also crowded around take-out lines all in support of fellow L.A. County firefighter James von Harz and his young daughter Cecilia who has been battling cancer since she was 2-years-old.

The fundraiser was organized by Fire Family Foundation, an L.A.-based non-profit. As the charitable hand of Firefighters First Credit Union, the Foundation serves firefighters, their families and all affected by fire devastation.

Fire Family Foundation coordinated the fundraiser with Robin Salzer, owner of Robin’s who held a similar event for Cecilia earlier in the year. Salzer was particularly touched by the youngster’s story.

“Children are the most priceless gift from God and as a father it broke my heart to read about Cecilia and her struggle to live, to live a lifetime that we often take for granted,” said Salzer.

Money raised from the event will help Cecilia’s family purchase alternative medicine and supplements not covered by insurance. The little girl was diagnosed with stage 1 Wilms’ Tumor at the age of 2 and went through surgery to remove her right kidney along with a two pound tumor. She then endured 20 weeks of chemotherapy. Earlier this year, after six months of remission, the cancer returned to her lungs. She has since endured radiation to both lungs.

Cecilia’s alternative medication is $1,500 a month, which allows the active girl a normal childhood with playtime, playdates and quality of life. Without this alternative medication, she would be constantly nauseous, sick and unable to sleep. With the funds raised at Robin’s, Fire Family Foundation will be able to pay for almost eight months of alternative medicine for Cecilia.

“Fire Family Foundation is about offering a helping hand in times of need, and whether it be a firefighter or fire victim, we’re here to help, p. But we are particularly pleased to co-host this event with someone as community minded as Robin Salzer and to be joined by hundreds of firefighters in this cause,” said Mike Mastro, FFF Board Chair.

Fire Family Foundation is still accepting donations on behalf of Cecilia; donors can visit www.firefamilyfoundation.org or contact Robin McCarthy, executive director at (323) 550-2208. Checks may be made payable to Fire Family Foundation, 815 Colorado Blvd., Los Angeles CA 90041 with the notation: Cecilia’s Day.

About Fire Family Foundation

Fire Family responds when tragedy affects firefighters and fire victims. The charitable hand of the Firefighters First Credit Union, Fire Family Foundation offers immediate assistance to firefighters and their families, fire victims, fire departments, and charities. The Foundation believes that by coming together as a “Fire Family,” assistance can be provided to those impacted by fire. Learn more at www.FireFamilyFoundation.org.

The Foundation is based in Los Angeles, but serves the state of California.