Firehouse Subs donates grant money to New Bern Police Department, fire department

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First responders in one county in eastern Carolina are receiving big grants to help them with new equipment they use to save lives every day.

Firehouse Subs has a Public Safety Foundation that was created after founders of the company helped feed first responders and survivors of Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

Since the grant's creation, they have donated over $18 million to first responders, and Tuesday, a combined $36,000 was given to the Township No. 7 Fire Department and the New Bern Police Department.

The fire department was able to purchase eight new turnout gear worth $20,000.

The company, which was founded by first responders, says it's important to help those that protect us.

"To us, it's very important, it gets to the core of who we are," explains the company's area representative, Tim Goss. "Robin and Chris were actual firemen, this is just a part of the legacy that we've had and it's been a long line of history in their family and it's kind of just been a part of who we are as a company since then."

The New Bern Police Department received just over $16,000 for the purchase and training of a new K-9, which allows 10-year-old K-9 Zorin to retire from the force.

The police department will go pick out their new K-9 officer next week.

The Public Safety Foundation is money that comes from customer donations at their stores around the country.