APPLETON (WLUK) - A national organization says it will pay off the home mortgage of the family of Appleton firefighter Mitch Lundgaard.
Lundgaard was killed in a shooting last month at the transit center in downtown Appleton.
The Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation is paying off the Lundgaard family's mortgage. Established in memory of a New York firefighter who died in the 9/11 terrorist attacks, the foundation supports the families of first responders.
“This senseless death underscores the dangers our first responders face every day. They answer every call trying to save lives -- knowing they risk losing their own,” Tunnel to Towers CEO and Chairman Frank Siller said in a news release. “Now, it is our responsibility to step up and take care of this family and make sure they know we have their backs.”
“While it won’t ever replace Mitch it certainly will help secure the family’s future," Appleton Fire Chief Jeremy Hansen said in a news release.
Along with Lundgaard's wife, Lindsey, the family includes three young sons.
Foundation leaders say their contribution will allow money already raised through other efforts to go toward the family's future needs.
Wednesday's announcement coincides with the Stephen Siller Tunnel to Towers Foundation bringing its 9/11 Never Forget mobile exhibit to Waupun. The exhibit is a 53-foot-long tractor-trailer that opens into a 1,000-square-foot exhibit. It includes artifacts from 9/11 and audio tapes of firefighters as they responded.
It will be open from noon-8 p.m. Saturday and Sunday during Celebrate Waupun. It will be located at 510 E. Spring Street.