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Survivor Fund

 

 

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The Survivor Fund Needs Your Help!

The towing industry is one of the most dangerous professions in the world.  As towing operators go about their work to serve the needs of the motoring public, they are often in harm’s way.  As a result, the towing industry loses approximately sixty operators annually.  This number was unknown for a long time and is a staggering one to comprehend.

 

In 2005, the International Towing and Recovery Hall of Fame and Museum established its Survivor Fund to provide immediate financial support to the families of these men and women who lose their lives in the line of service in our industry.  A committee was formed and work began to collect donations from around the industry.  Generosity was seen from corporations and individuals as well as from many industry associations.  There were fundraising events, auctions, sales of remembrance wristbands and more.  It was very important to the museum that the Survivor Fund be available at the time of these tragedies and to make that commitment required having readily available funds in the bank.  The early fundraising efforts allowed the Survivor Fund to build a balance that permitted it to begin providing support for families in 2007.

 

Those initial payouts were just $500 each but they made an impact for the affected families.  The response from families and from companies impacted by these tragedies was very positive and the Survivor Fund continued its work to ensure it would be able to provide perpetual support to the industry.  To provide this kind of reliability and longevity, the Survivor Fund continues its fundraising work to build the nest egg and also to increase the benefit to families.  The benefit amount is set annually by the ITRHFM Board of Directors and is currently $2,500 per incident for any qualifying tragedy in the towing and roadside service industry.  For individuals or companies who are members of the towing museum, the benefit is $4,000.  This money is paid directly to the families, often to young widows with numerous children, and unlike insurance payouts, these benefits are available very quickly to support immediate needs.

 

The Survivor Fund is managed alongside our industry memorial wall, The Wall of the Fallen.  This Wall of the Fallen was unveiled in 2006 at the towing museum in Chattanooga, TN.  Since that time, the ITRHFM has had to add 392 names to our Wall.  More names are added annually at the museum’s September gathering and the museum staff and volunteers often get to meet the families who have benefited from the Survivor Fund during these events.  These conversations reinforce the value and need for the Survivor Fund in our industry.

 

Though we all wish for the day when there are no more deaths in our profession, the reality is that more lives will be lost and more families will be in need.  Our goal for the Survivor Fund continues to be to create a strong and secure perpetual offering to the families of those in the industry when tragedies occur.  Toward this end, the museum has created a continuing supporter program in addition to its regular fundraising efforts.  Through this pledge drive, any person, company or organization can make a pledge to the Survivor Fund for each tragedy related payout.  By doing this, the Survivor Fund is able to notify those who pledged when these tragedies occur, thus maintaining awareness within the industry and ensuring roadside safety remains in the discussions at towing companies nationwide.  Additionally, the pledge drive allows the Survivor Fund to predict the amount that will come in from pledges associated with each event and this has allowed the continued increase in the benefit to industry families.

 

Through the generosity of many corporations, organizations and individuals across the industry, the Survivor Fund is able to provide support to families at their greatest time of need.  There continues to be significant danger in this profession but as towing operators support the motoring public, the Survivor Fund stands ready to support our own.  We only ask that you join us in supporting the Survivor Fund and the towing and road service industry.  Whether you can help with a large corporate donation or can just give $5 each time a towing operator is killed in the line of service, your support is important to our cause and to the many families who find themselves in need of The Survivor Fund.

 

Please support The Survivor Fund.

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Click Here to Print the Wall of the Fallen-Survivor Fund Application

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