“I came up here 15 years ago and saw catastrophic damage. It broke my heart. I’d actually never seen fire damage before…So anything you can do to help, please help these guys get their helicopter, please, because, hey, we can’t let nothing happen to this place.”- Charles Barkley
Two weekends ago, NBA Legend Charles Barkley was in Lake Tahoe for the 33rd annual American Century Championship. The greatest golfer of all time was there to compete, roast Warriors fans, and give a P.S.A. to help the Tahoe Douglas Fire team spread the word about their aim to have direct access to helicopters. This video from SouthTahoeNOW.com shows Chuck and Tahoe Douglas Fire Chief Scott Lindgren talking about a need for helicoptering fire rescue coverage. Shockingly, the Lake Tahoe basin is without a fire helicopter team. The $60 million plan would add two helicopters, a station to serve the area, and the needed training in order to have a successful operation.
The Chuckster is very fond of Lake Tahoe. After the Angora Fire occurred in 2007, Charles donated $190,000 over the next two years to help out the community. The Angora Fire, which occurred in June and July 2007, “burned through 3,100 acres, destroyed 242 residences and 67 commercial structures, damaged 35 other homes, and engaged 2,180 firefighters.” He called the area a national landmark that must be protected. With wildfires continuing to be an issue in the area, this seems like a necessary expenditure. Click here to learn more about Operation Save Lake Tahoe.