Burning for a benefit | VailDaily.com

Burning for a benefit

Charlie Keller and Jenny Klingmueller are part of this year's Colorado Fire Fighters Calendar, a fundraiser for the Colorado Children's Hospital burn center. They with Eagle River Firefighters Richard Romsdahl, Andy Pohlman, and Chip Carney who was part of last year's calendar.

AVON, Colorado – Our firefighters are so hot that for the second straight year they’re on a calendar packed with smokin’ hotties.

Two firefighters from the Eagle River Fire Protection District are on next year’s Colorado Fire Fighters Calendar, a benefit for the Colorado Children’s Hospital burn center.

Jenny Klingmueller and Charlie Keller are on the newest calendar. Chip Carney, also with Eagle River, was on last year’s.

Carney told the Eagle River crew about it, and Klingmueller and Keller decided to give it a shot.

“It’s for such a great cause,” Klingmueller said.

The calendars are out, and they didn’t get to see their calendar pages until just before the debut party when everyone else did.

Fire and fashion

It’s a fashion photo shoot, with everything that goes with that. It’s billed as “The Hottest Men and Women of First Response.”

Klingmueller said the photographers are respectful of the firefighters. They’re mindful, she said, that the firefighters don’t model for a living but save lives for a living.

All the calendar photo shoots were at the West Metro fire department’s training facility, so the firefighters are doing things they normally do – cracking open fire hydrants, climbing ladders – but they’ve never looked quite like this doing it.

Klingmueller and Rebecca Clark of Elk Creek will share the Ms. October designation and serve as advocates for breast cancer awareness.

Klingmueller is wearing bunker pants and a sports bra – beautifully. She had her hair and makeup done for the photo session, but other than that it’s all her.

“There’s a fine line in all this and we want to stay on the side of this noble profession and Children’s Hospital,” Klingmueller said.

And it turns out that it’s not enough to be good looking and have diamond-hard abs. You have to communicate clearly.

“That’s how they sell calendars,” Klingmueller said.

Around four dozen tried out; 13 made the calendar.

Helping burn victims

Klingmueller is originally from Wyoming, attended college in Boulder, headed south and eventually landed back in the Vail Valley in 2005. She has been with Eagle River Fire for seven years.

“I love being a firefighter. Helping anyone in their time of need is one of the best things about the job,” Klingmueller said. “One of the reasons I wanted to be a firefighter was the community involvement and to be able to give back to the community.”

The kids go to Estes Park’s Camp Cheeley for a week – 88 of them from the U.S. and the U.K.

“These kids have survived these horrific burn injuries and they feel like they’re different. They learn that they’re all in this together, that they’re no different than anyone else,” Klingmueller said.

The Colorado Firefighter Calendar was founded in 2011 to raise money for burn victims and raise fire safety awareness.

Firefighters volunteer to raise funds, attend events, educate children on fire prevention and increase awareness for the Children’s Hospital Colorado Burn Center and other centers around Colorado.

Proceeds received from the sale of calendars and special events will directly benefit the Children’s Hospital Colorado Burn Center and centers across the state.

“I look forward to building a strong organization with the board of directors and setting the bar to new heights by expanding our services within the Colorado community and for Children’s Hospital Colorado’s Burn Center,” said new board president Perry Palmer.

Staff Writer Randy Wyrick can be reached at 970-748-2935 or rwyrick@vaildaily.com.

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