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Local Car Dealership Helps Local First Responders with Donations

This article is a direct street report from our correspondent and has not been edited by the 1st Responder newsroom.

Royal GMC & Buick of Sussex, NJ has been helping volunteer fire departments and first aid in Sussex County with donations since the end of 2021. Kevin Rudolph their sales & leasing team leader started the program as a way to give back to the community. He wanted to help first responders such as the volunteer fire departments and first aid squads who are ready to respond 24 hours a day 365 days a year in any conditions for no pay. Kevin stated before he was in the car sales business he was an ASPCA Police Officer and currently is a member of the Montague Fire Department as a fire police officer so he has a strong admiration for the volunteer first responders who dedicate their time to the community to help those in need. He wanted to help them when they are in need.

When the program was started, Rudolph said he decided he would give a portion of his sales commission to put toward donating to a volunteer fire department or first aid squad in need of a piece of equipment that they otherwise couldn’t afford or just needed some additional funding. He approached Engle and Mark Oostdyk, which own Royal GMC & Buick, and employee Kevin, and asked if they would match what he would contribute on a monthly basis based on his sales for the month and they agreed. Since the program started, eleven departments from Sussex County and one company from West Milford received donations. Rudolph stated that since 2001, his program, Ride with Rudolph, has dispersed around $60,000 to these volunteer departments. The dealership and Rudolph also sponsor several other charities such as the FDNY ALS Watch Dawg Foundation annual golf outing. This foundation was established after an FDNY firefighter was diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gerhrig’s disease) and was retired from the job by the city but was not provided with a disability pension. This group raises money for the families of FDNY firefighters suffering from ALS. Another great charity that Royal GMC, and well as GM Corporate donated to is the Tunnels to Towers Foundation. In 2023 a donation of $20,000 was given to the foundation which has been helping America’s hero’s since 9/11. This foundation donates money and mortgage free homes to Gold Star families and fallen first responder families.

The program primarily gives to the first responders in Sussex County but it is branching out into Passaic and Morris County.  The program is only for volunteer fire and first aid departments, especially those in great need. Some departments in North Jersey do not receive enough funding to equip themselves with the equipment needed, or they are a department that runs on donations only. Those are the departments that this program is here for. 

If you are interested in learning more about the program for your department, you can reach out to Kevin Rudolph at 201-566-7692. Royal GMC & Buick and Kevin Rudolph have been helping first responders in the showroom as well. Many local first responders see Kevin when purchasing vehicles. He loves to work with them in the buying process and make their experience smooth and easy. If you are looking for a vehicle Kevin says to come talk to him. Royal GMC & Buick is located at 355 Route 23 North in Sussex, NJ.

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ADAM ALBERTISenior Correspondent

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