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My name is Cheryl Rayfield.

On the 4th of February 2022, my world was turned upside down when my husband Stephen Rayfield a volunteer firefighter went out on a fire call and never came back.

My heart was shattered into a million pieces, being told by the RCMP officer that night, that Stephen had been killed and myself having to then retell this to our 6-year-old son that his daddy would never be coming home.  Since then I've asked myself how can I keep Stephen Rayfield’s legacy alive and make a difference.

Steve  always wanted to make a difference, he would often say ' Do you realize how important the role of a garbage man is in our lives…yet a famous person gets more recognition than he does' or ' How different our lives would be without the key workers of the world?'   He became a volunteer firefighter to try and make more of a difference in people's lives.

I'm also a major overthinker and thought about not only how the people who loved Steve were affected receiving that news but I started to think often about the first responders involved that night and how their mental health is challenged and gone unnoticed more times than most people.


That night destroyed any illusions I had of control over my life and left such a lost feeling of vulnerability.  So I started to think more specifically about the young RCMP officer and how it was his job that night to give me the worst news of my life.  I decided to reach out to him, to see how he was doing. We had a meeting and I then thanked him for what he had to do that night. I could see that this made a slight difference to him. I also met with many of the firefighters who were involved that night and helped with the funeral and I did the same thing with them. This process has not only helped them but I feel it helped with the healing process in moving forward with my grief.  

Fast forward one year and the 9 Make a Difference foundation was launched.  The 9 represents Steve's firefighter helmet number.

Click here to read about our vision and how we will continue Steve's legacy to make a difference.

To see some of our events click here.

Thank you for reading this far, if you have any questions or would like to know more about our movement please fill out the contact page.

Cheryl x

If you have had an interaction with a first responder that made a difference in your life, or would like more information about our organization please get in touch.

Either CLICK HERE to fill out our form or email us.

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