Mission Fire Chief Larry Watkinson takes on the ice bucket challenge to support the ALS Association.

Fire chief doused with ice and water

Almost $1.7 million has been raised for ALS Canada so far

First it was the ice, then came the water — a lot of water.

Standing in front of the Mission fire department’s new ladder truck in his uniform, Mission Fire Chief Larry Watkinson had two buckets of ice water dumped on him by two firefighters on top of the truck in support of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge fundraiser.

But it didn’t stop there. After the buckets were emptied, more water gushed out of the truck from its master stream device, which had its hose attached to the fire hydrant at fire hall number 1 on Seventh Avenue.

The chief was drenched from head to toe, but he had also raised $240 for the ALS Association to battle Lou Gehrig’s disease.

Watkinson was nominated to take on the challenge by Abbotsford Fire Chief Don Beer the day before.

The Mission fire chief issued the same challenge to Mission RCMP Staff Sgt. Rob Dixon and Mission’s manager of public works Matt Dunham.

As of Thursday, the Ice Bucket Challenge has raised almost $1.7 million for ALS Canada. The challenge was inspired by Boston College baseball player Pete Frates, who has been diagnosed with ALS.

ALS is a rapidly progressive, neuromuscular disease that can affect anyone at any age. According to the ALS Society of B.C., the average life expectancy after diagnosis is three to five years.

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