On Saturday, 286 runners turned out to take part in the 2nd annual “5 Alarm” 5K in Scarborough. The event raised more than $13,000, which will be used to help Old Orchard Beach firefighter Andy Turcotte battle spinal cancer.

The second year of the race saw both the attendance and the money raised double, according to organizer Cindy Paquet. In addition to the money raised from race entry fees, proceeds from a bake sale, a raffle and a previously held comedy show, all added to the total.

In 2001, Turcotte, a native of East Millinocket, joined the Old Orchard Beach Fire Department. His duties include advanced life support, fire suppression and emergency medical education for the department as well as the wider community.

In the summer of 2006, Turcotte was diagnosed with spinal cancer. In the past two years, he has undergone numerous procedures and surgeries, including spinal cord radiation. His medical team includes Dr. Rajiv Desai – a Scarborough-based neurosurgeon.

“Although the last couple of years have been trying, it has been a blessing to have continual support from my brothers and sisters from the fire departments, co-workers from LifeFlight and Central Maine Medical Center, all of my friends and especially my family including my parents Dennis and Patti and twin brother Aaron and brother Tony,” Turcotte said.

While attending both high school and college, Turcotte was an active member of the East Millinocket Fire Department. After graduating from the paramedic program at Southern Maine Community College, Turcotte was hired by the Old Orchard Beach Fire Department.

In addition to his work in Old Orchard Beach, he is also a critical care flight paramedic and nurse for LifeFlight of Maine, which is based at Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston.


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