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Derby Fire Department receives $5K grant from insurance commissioner, Blue Cross Blue Shield NC

Richmond County Emergency Services Deputy Director T.J. Wilkerson, left, and Derby Volunteer Fire Department’s Capt. Warren McBride, right, accept a $5,000 check from N.C. Insurance Commissioner Mike Causey on Tuesday.

DERBY — A Richmond County fire department was one of six in the region to get a visit — and a check — from Insurance Commissioner Mike Causey on Tuesday.

Causey, who also serves as the state fire marshal, presented the Derby Volunteer Fire Department with a check for $5,000.

According to a press release from Causey’s office, the grant funding is from a $500,000 contribution from Blue Cross Blue Shield NC to help firefighters in the state.

Half of that contribution is going to 50 fire departments across the state that receive the least amount of funding from the local government and the remaining $250,000 is going toward mental health education and treatment programs for firefighters, according to a press release.

“It is an honor for me to personally be able to present these $5,000 grant checks, courtesy of Blue Cross Blue Shield NC,” Causey said in the release. “This money will help these needy fire departments to better protect their community. The coronavirus pandemic has presented an added challenge to their fundraising efforts.”

Causey also presented checks to the Gibson/Southwest, Stewartville and Springhill-Friendship fire departments in Scotland County and the Pekin and Uwharrie departments in Montgomery County.


This is the second check the Derby Fire Department, which currently has 27 volunteers, has received this month.

Rep. Ben Moss, R-Richmond, was able to secure $10,000 for each volunteer fire and rescue agency in the county in the state budget. Those checks were presented Dec. 3.

This also wasn’t Causey’s first visit to Richmond County this year.

In September, the commissioner was in Hamlet as a speaker for the 30th anniversary memorial service in recognition of the Imperial Foods fire. Causey also presented Calvin White, who had recently retired as chief of the Hamlet Fire Department, with a commemorative fire service coin.

Causey was elected as insurance commissioner after defeating Richmond County native Wayne Goodwin in 2016 and again in 2020.


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