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Boot camp proceeds to benefit West blast survivors

Pam LeBlanc

Editor’s note: This article was originally published May 8, 2013

An Austin firefighter who leads a boot camp is donating this month’s proceeds to survivors of the West explosions.

Ryan Vacek, a lieutenant with the Westlake Fire Department, says proceeds from his fire-themed exercise sessions will go to the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation’s West Texas Firefighter and EMS Fallen Hero Fund.

Fourteen people, including 10 firefighters, died in the April 17 blast at the West Fertilizer Co. More than 200 people were injured and dozens of homes destroyed.

Trained firefighters teach Vacek’s boot camps, which normally cost $10 per workout or $50 per month. This month participants won’t be charged. Whatever they donate will be given to the national foundation, to help survivors of the blast.

“The firefighters in West put everything on the line to protect their community and we ask that you help give back by contributing to the fund while dedicating a workout in their honor,” said Vacek, author of “The Fire Athlete’s Fitness Program.”

Workouts are held at two locations. In South Austin, workouts are from 6-7 p.m. Monday and Wednesday at Shepherd of the Hill Lutheran Church, 3525 Bee Caves Road. In North Austin, workouts are from 6:30-7:30 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday at the old fire station across the street from Westwood High School at 12400 Mellow Meadow.

For more information about Vacek’s boot camps go here .

For more information about the Fallen Firefighters Foundation, go here .