Mason, 10, was tragically killed in a snowmobile accident on March 7, 2015.
His legacy will live on with the donation.
“Ethan was a free spirit, he lived life to the fullest … he was just a little boy who liked to have fun, enjoyed time with his friends,” said Ethan’s father, Bryan, with tears in his eyes.
While Radisson has a fire department and fire personnel as well as first responders, until Tuesday it didn’t have an ambulance.
Bryan, who is a first responder and Crestline Coach employee, said the vehicle they were using didn’t run very well.
After his son’s accident it was even more apparent that an ambulance was needed to serve the community.
“We drive a ‘78 Ford, it doesn’t run very well, doesn’t function very well. There’s not much room inside for patients,” Bryan said.
“It was after Ethan’s accident we actually realized how bad the unit was. We started seriously looking maybe a year ago for a new unit … to have this vehicle donated is just amazing it’ll make such a difference to the way we serve our community and how we interact with the patients.”
“It brings something positive out of something so bad so it shines a little bit of light on it, knowing that people out there are taking the opportunity to help us, to do some good out of something that was so wrong.”
There are six first responders and 14 firefighters in Radisson who respond to approximately 20 to 50 emergency calls a year.
Radisson Fire Chief Jack Werezak said 99 per cent of those calls take place on Highway 16 and getting there even a few minutes sooner could mean the difference between life and death.
“If you’ve ever driven Highway 16, you understand what it’s all about. To get their rapid response is key to helping people and lives so if we can get there five, four, three minutes earlier … it’s big,” Werezak said.
The words “Vehicle donated by MD Ambulance and Crestline Coach in memory of Ethan Manson” is decaled on the outside of the ambulance.
“The last couple years, we’ve had a couple dear friends, colleagues that are no longer with us so to have something like this is helping Bryan’s family, we call ourselves a family, we’re firefighters, we’re first responders,” Werezak said.
“To see this unit with that sign on the side about Ethan is priceless … it lifted the weight off our shoulders, it brings us back to reality, telling us there is a lot of good people out there.”
Meaghan Craig contributed to this story