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A saintly donation: Businesses present area firefighters with pendants

Christine Selvig, who organized the St. Florian and St. Michael pendant donations for the police and fire departments, hugs firefighter/ EMT April Warner after giving her a pendant at the Aug. 9 city council meeting. Katie Nelson / RiverTown Multimedia 1 / 2
Retired St. Paul firefighter and former Cottage Grove Fire Department volunteer Bob Eddy was given a St. Florian pendant Aug. 9 along with the 57 Cottage Grove firefighters. Katie Nelson / RiverTown Multimedia 2 / 2

Over 100 Cottage Grove, Newport and St. Paul Park firefighters are receiving a unique token of protection from Selvig Jewelers and 22 other businesses this month with donations of St. Florian pendants.

Selvig and many of the same businesses donated St. Michael pendants to the Cottage Grove and St. Paul Park police officers last September, and have now raised over $3,000 to do the same for the firefighters and EMTs.

St. Florian is known as the patron saint of firefighters.

Selvig and several other business owners presented 57 pendants to the Cottage Grove firefighter/ EMTs Aug. 9, including a special one for Bob Eddy. Eddy retired from the St. Paul Fire Department after 30 years and several years of volunteer firefighter work in old Cottage Grove.

"These men and women do not do this job for this type recognition," Fire Chief Rick Redenius said. "For a lot of them here it's a calling, for some it's family, for some it's a new adventure, but it's definitely not for recognition ... It is very welcome and appreciated. It means something special for everyone."

Pendants will be presented to St. Paul Park firefighters Aug. 22, and to Newport firefighters at the Aug. 17 city council meeting.