Benefit in place for Milan fireman

Wanda English Burnett

Firefighters are a tough lot. They are the first to go into a burning building and are thought of as heroes.
A Milan firefighter has done all that. He has trained and donated endless hours of service to the community he lives in and loves. Now, he needs help from others.

Doug Laws was recently diagnosed with leukemia and is currently awaiting a bone marrow transplant. He is married to Robin (Swinney) Laws and is described as a devoted husband and father to their two children, Allen, 13, and Annjeanette, 10, both students in the Milan School Corporation.

Laws joined the Milan Volunteer Fire Department in January of 1994. He became a certified first responder in 2001. He has responded to more than 150 runs in the past two years alone, helping his community, family, friends, and neighbors when an emergency occurs.

He is employed with UPS as a driver, serving the Madison area. His family attends The Cave Hill Church of God.

UPS driver Donnie Thompson, and a firefighter for the Aurora department, saw a need and asked a few fellow firefighters if they agreed. They did. The brotherhood of firefighters is strong and they realized Laws family could use the extra money from a benefit and more than that, the support it would show.
Firemen from many departments, including all of Ripley County and some surrounding counties came together for an initial meeting recently to plan a breakfast benefit for the Laws family.

The outpouring of support was tremendous as Thompson led the effort with the food mainly being donated. The breakfast will consist of pancakes, sausage, biscuits & gravy, and homemade coffee cake with drink options. It will be held Sunday, May 23 from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Milan Fire Department. Parking will be available at the high school with shuttle service provided.

Prizes have been pouring in with plans to also have a “split the pot” the day of the event. For those who can’t come to the breakfast, but still want to donate, a Doug Laws Fund has been set up at the Fifth Third Bank.

The community now has the opportunity to help a fireman, who is known for his dedication to helping others.