The Greg Freshwater Memorial Paramedic Scholarship Fund was established to honor the life and legacy of Waterloo firefighter Greg Freshwater, who was fatally injured in an accident while jogging in south Waterloo in summer 2017. The scholarship aids Waterloo firefighters with the cost of paramedic school, which Greg was enrolled in at the time of the accident.
The scholarship is being awarded to three Waterloo firefighters this fall: Nathan Hinders, Spencer Bruess, and [name withheld by recipient]. Ten Waterloo firefighters have now received the scholarship since its inception in 2017.
“Not only does the Greg Freshwater Scholarship keep alive the memory of one of our members lost to tragedy, it provides financial relief to those who have chosen to pursue the goal of becoming a paramedic on our department. These individuals are the future of our ability to provide emergent, advanced life-saving treatments to those we serve,” says Lt. Jason Hernandez, Medical Supervisor at Waterloo Fire Rescue.
Trained paramedic personnel are in short supply and these trained individuals will enhance emergency medical services provided by Waterloo Fire Rescue. “We are grateful to the Freshwater family for their gift towards the education of future paramedics, which aids in addressing the problem of the paramedic shortage we are currently seeing in our region and across the country,” says Hernandez.
This year begins fundraising efforts to grow the Greg Freshwater Memorial Scholarship Fund from $50,000 to $125,000 in order to reach endowment, ensuring it can forever provide $6,000 in scholarships annually to Waterloo Fire Rescue personnel working towards their certification. An anonymous donor is matching the first $25,000 in donations! Donations can be made online or by check with “Greg Freshwater Memorial Scholarship” in the memo line mailed to Waterloo Community Foundation P.O. Box 1253 Waterloo, IA 50704.