Guardians of the Ribbon - Northern New Jersey Chapter

Founded in 2010 by breast cancer survivor & Wayne Memorial First Aid Squad member Daria Lojik, the group is a local chapter of the national movement started in 2007 by an Arizona firefighter who created the Pink Heals Tour, a fleet of pink fire trucks that tour the country to raise awareness of cancer support.


Covering the counties of Bergen, Essex, Hudson, Morris, Passaic, Sussex & Warren, the chapter actively encourages local cities & towns to become a member and participate in the “Care Enough to Wear Pink” resolution days of October 25th-27th during which official tee shirts from the chapter are worn.

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FIREMATIC HISTORY

“Gemma” - 1984 Mack CF-600 1500 gpm

Formerly operated by both the Bloomingdale & Haledon (NJ) FD’s, this rig was used as a loaner apparatus by the local Pierce dealer who donated it to the group. It was then painted by the North Bergen Dept. of Public Works shops and retains its’ water tank for use at wetdowns & other functions.

“Daria” - 1966 Ford/Sanford 750 gpm/750 gal.

Originally operated by the Freehold (NY) Fire Co. as Engine Tanker 10-2, this rig was donated to the group in June of 2010 by the Sunny Hill Golf Resort in Greenville, New York. Its’ water tank has been removed to provide seating for those riding along in parades & other community events.

Special thanks to Daria Lojik, founder of the Guardians of the Ribbon Northern NJ Chapter for her assistance in providing information about the group & sharing her story of survival. A word of thanks is also extended to fellow fire apparatus photographer Ron Jeffers for providing information on the Mack as well as for his assistance in providing contact with the group’s founder.

What a difference two months makes!! This rig was originally photographed in May 2011 during the annual photo night event hosted by the NJ Metro Fire Photographers Association. Shown here two months later in July 2011 during the Lincoln Park FD’s 100th Anniversary parade, the entire left front portion of the rig is covered in signatures of cancer survivors & supporters!!

The Fleet - “Daria” and “Gemma”

Formerly serving as front line apparatus, the rigs are now used to honor the memory of those lost in the battle against cancer while serving as an inspiration to those still battling the disease. They attend various community fund raisers to rally support and generate funds to assist with expenses for medical bills, research and other general expenses for families with a loved one battling cancer.

The cab & sides of the body are lined with signatures of cancer survivors, those battling the disease & as memorials to those lost. The front of the cab bears the name Daria, the chapter’s founder along with signatures from family acknowledging her survival and a memorial to her mother Jean Loijk who lost her battle with breast cancer in April 2010. May her memory forever remain in their hearts through the good work of the Guardians of the Ribbon.

For further information on the Guardians of the Ribbon Northern NJ Chapter, visit their website @ www.pinkhealsnnj.org