Community Service - 1999


1998 was the eighth year for the PMC's Project HEAT'S ON (Handicapped and Elderly Assistance To Service Our Neighbors).  HEAT'S ON is a national program that is administered through the Mechanical Service Contractors of America. In its ninth year in Washtenaw County, HEAT'S ON is a community service project that provides free safety inspections and minor repairs of heating systems.

PMC sets up all the service calls with the assistance of  Washtenaw and Livingston Counties Family Independence Agencies and Neighborhood Senior Services to assure they are needy individuals.  The project is jointly sponsored by PMC and UA Local 190 who recruits volunteers among its ranks to give their time and expertise, while PMC solicited service trucks, equipment, and small parts from their contractors.  All coordinating, scheduling, and purchasing is processed through the offices of the PMC. Pictured right - getting ready for the day's program.

The Greater Michigan Plumbing & Mechanical Contractors Association Membership has always taken very seriously the responsibility to give back to the community.  Volunteerism, sharing with others, has always been a very important aspect of the work of our organization. On the following pages you can browse through some of the projects that our members, and our partners at UA Local 190 - Plumbers / Pipe Fitters / HVACR Technicians / Gas Distribution have become involved in throughout the years. 


One of the more interesting aspects of sponsoring a HEAT'S ON Project comes after the fact.  When we have to shut down someone's furnace for safety problems, it's important to do our best to get the participant up and running as soon as possible.

In addition to the service work, all participating homes are provided smoke detectors or have the batteries in their smoke detectors replaced and have their furnace filters cleaned and/or replaced.  All homes were also provided with a top of the line Carbon Monoxide Detector installed in an electrical outlet with a battery backup.  Project HEAT'S ON is one of our industry's favorite projects.  Little can compare with the outpouring of affection from so many of the recipients as they are assured of safe heat for the winter months.

Throughout the years we have replaced a tremendous number of furnaces, and this year was no different with three replacements.  The replacements range from simple problems with the heat exchanger up to, one of the most interesting, an old steam boiler replacement that took over a week with the huge old boiler having to be cut into pieces and removed.

No matter how difficult, the project will always make sure that our recipients are ready for the winter when it comes.


The Greater Michigan PMC along with others in the Plumbing and Mechanical Industry sponsored two sisters who teamed up to comprise one of the top pledge earners for the State in the Magic Ride.

12Eleven year old Lily Calmeyn, who has ridden for the past eight years, had help again this year as she was joined by her sister, seven year old Jacy Calmeyn, both nieces of PMC's President Sandy Miller.  PMC along with Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 190 are their major sponsors.  The organizations have been participating in the Magic Ride for the past six years.  Other contributing sponsors included: the Michigan State Pipe Trades Association, Michigan State Building Trades Council, Boone & Darr, Inc. and the John E. Green Company along with the MPMCA.  PMC and Local 190 are Primary  Co-Sponsors of the statewide event.  This co-sponsorship is an increased effort on the part of our organization to help make Magic Ride one of the most successful fundraising events for children in Michigan.

11In the past years, the PMC and Local 190, along with others in the construction industry, have sponsored a rider (or in this case, riders, who work together as a family).  Lily and her sister have placed first four years and second three years over the past seven years - a tremendous record.

10 In doing so, they have returned a great deal of money to their local CTF Council, the Livingston Children's Advocacy Network.  This helps Network programs in Livingston Country where the girls live.

Area PMC contractors and Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 190 members participated for the sixth time in the annual Christmas in April - Washtenaw County. 

Contractors provided service trucks, tools and parts to facilitate the network of volunteers who provide home maintenance assistance for low income, elderly and disabled residents.  Local 190 members take part, both by coordinating work and volunteering the day of the event to do plumbing and heating work, along with other things needed. 


Both PMC and Local 190 are extremely proud of our volunteers, workers and contractors alike, and salute their efforts during this tremendously important day.


Without a doubt, one of the PMC's favorite projects is shopping for children whose Christmas will be bleak without assistance from "Secret Santa". 

This year, to give to the children along with the parent, the PMC decided to purchase tickets for local movie theaters.  This present enables the whole family to go out and enjoy an evening together.  As hectic as the season canget, it's always important to remember what the Christmas season is truly about.


PMC continues to be involved with “Friends In Deed”.  We were originally introduced to the organization by Mary Jean Zill, wife of PMC’s Chairman Lloyd Zill, who was a volunteer. The support rendered by the organization ranges from assistance with housing, to car repair, to financial support, to helping those in need to obtain furniture like dressers, or appliances such as refrigerators and stoves.  PMC solicits donations, and does printing for the organization along with helping with special projects. 


Friends In Deed annually holds a “Christmas Bed Drive” for low-income families in the Washtenaw County area.  Many of those individuals are sleeping on the floor.  Beds are always in great demand to those in need.  PMC has been a financial supporter of the program since it began, helping to provide beds for children and their parents during the holiday season.


PMC donated money, and PMC members donated their trucks and tools for the recent Habitat for Humanity "Blitz" to build houses for low income families.   The "Blitz" was for five low-income families, who had their dream of home ownership come true due to the Habitat for Humanity efforts.  Scott Klapper, Business Representative for Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 190, organized the workers from Local 190 who participated.  The Local 190 workers gave up evenings and Saturdays to get the projects done. This is another example of labor and management working together for the betterment of our community.



Early one morning a little boy sat at the beach and saw a man walking along picking up starfish from the hundreds that had been washed up on the beach with the morning tide.  He watched as the man carefully returned them back in the ocean.  The boy inquired of the man what he was doing.  The man explained he was returning the starfish to the water, before they died in the sun.  The boy laughed, and said with the enormous number of starfish on the beach the man could never hope to get them all back in - he would never make a difference.
The man reach down, picked up a starfish and set it back in the water.  He looked at the little boy and said,  "I just made a difference to that one". 

Martin Luther King said, "Every man must decide whether he will walk in the light of creative altruism or in the darkness of destructive selfishness.  This is the judgment.  Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, What are you doing for others?"


For the homeless, or victims of child or spouse abuse, there is always a need.  Maybe its sundries, such as shampoos, soaps and personal hygiene products, or clothes or toys for the children.  Whatever the need, there is never enough to go around.   An ongoing project of the PMC is to collect items to donate.  The donations are collected at the PMC offices, and when we have sufficient numbers, divided up between local shelters and churches.  Along with the sundry donations, we also distribute the excess book bags from UA week.  This gives children a place to carry their toys, and parents a type of small suitcase to store things.  Helping individuals make the transition from the shelter to new homes is an important part of helping them become self-supporting again.

13 PMC Chairman of the Board Lloyd Zill (pictured left) donates time each week to help make life easier for terminally ill patients and their families by donating one day a week to the Arbor Hospice Care Facility.  He donates time to help in the offices of the Hospice and works with the visiting nurses, preparing supplies and medical needs.  That comes naturally to Lloyd who was an Infantry Medic in World War II.  Along with the time spent by Chairman Zill, the PMC has donated bags to the Hospice to carry their supplies as they go directly to the homes of those in need.