Firefighters hold fundraiser for only survivor of fatal fire
MEHLVILLE, MO (KTVI) – More than 100 hungry philanthropists showed up an hour early to a fundraiser for Mia Gapsch, 13. She lost three members of her family to a house fire on August 27, 2013.
A barbecue and bake sale fundraiser covered the parking lot at Sperreng Middle School, where Mia is a 7th grader. Mehlville Firefighters planned the event, but firefighters from High Ridge, Valley Park, Affton, Kirkwood and many others came out for a plate.
Even drivers with First Student school bus company took their lunch break at Sperreng.
Mia escaped a burning house in the middle of that tragic August night. She asked a neighbor to call 911 because her sister, father, and grandmother were still inside.
Her uncle, Mike Gapsch, was one of the first Mehlville Firefighters to show up. He had to pull his own mother from that fire. His mother Georgetta, 79, his brother Terry, 38, and his niece Maci, 11, all died as a result of the fire. The girls’ mother died of cancer three years before.
Mike says, even though he was trying to rescue his own mother, he was doing the same thing he would do for anyone’s mother.
But Uncle Mike was truly impressed with the actions of his niece, “She was heroic,” he said. “People try to call us heroes every now and then. We are not. We did what we were trained to do. The real heroes are the non-firefighters, getting out getting help, not going back in the house when she knew her father and her sister were still in there. That’s heroic.”
Sperreng will host fundraisers Friday and Saturday at the school. Saturday morning, the students will host an “M&M’s for Mia” drive-through candy store.
Friday September 6, 2013
Saturday September 7, 2013
Sperreng Middle School
12111 Tesson Ferry Road.
Sappington, MO 63128
You can also make a check out to:
“Lindbergh Schools Foundation”
4900 s. Lindbergh Boulevard
St. Louis, MO 63126
Please write “Gapsch Family Fund” in the memo line.