TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WTXL) — A tattoo for a good cause. That’s what dozens did Wednesday at Carbon Ink Tattoo Shop.
Money raised went to the family of Tallahassee Fire Department Captain Brenden Rudy. Early September, Rudy died in a car accident.
The event was put together by his close friend group, the Arby Boys. Members include fellow firefighters Ben Pickles, Emilio Rodriguez, Jonathan Davis, and Mannie Weiss. The group formed after working with Rudy and bonding over shared humor.
“He was just an awesome guy," says Emilio Rodriguez.
Emilio Rodriguez is the owner of Carbon Ink Tattoo Shop. He is also a fire fighter who worked closely with Captain Rudy. It was him and the rest of a group of friends and fellow firefighters — known as the Arby’s boys. A special name stems from an old YouTube video that was an inside joke for the group.
With a sense of humor and a sense duty, the band of friends wanted to do something to honor their friend. What better idea than having a flash tattoo event. With a steady flow of people and community support tattoos were given. The art — having a significant meaning. All being things that were special to Captain Rudy.
Jared Wright didn’t know captain Rudy personally but wanted to show his support.
“Well it’s a firefighter from our community. He was helping save lives so why not support,” says Jared Wright.
Reasons like that is why this once small fundraiser turned into a community wide event. Jared Wright is one of many customers who came out to support the event and left with a few new accessories.
“So it was something that was going to start off being a small thing and it ended up becoming this. There was a bunch of vendors, friends, family, businesses that came together and started donating,” says Rodriguez.
Other tattoo artists offered their services — for free.
“I really feel like for an event like this when you’re asked, ‘Hey, do you want to raise money for a family who just went through an unbelievable tragedy?’ of course the answer is yes,” says Mattison Fire.
“He was a great leader in the fire department, and he was just a great friend, a great human being,” says Jonathan Davis.