“The hero is commonly the simplest and obscurest of men.”
— Henry David Thoreau
Independence Day fell on a Wednesday this year. That meant an unusual breakup of the work week, giving most of us a chance to get an extra chore done, relax in the sun, and play with the kids.
But there are a few people who don’t get the day off – police men and women, EMT’s, and firefighters. Not only do they have to work, but they have to work doubly hard. When fireworks are mishandled by drunken revelers causing injury or fire, it’s the firefighters that come out to rescue them.
To express a little appreciation for our local firefighters, my daughter Hayle, our exchange student Mariana, and I took a couple dozen homemade chocolate chip cookies to our local fire station – Tigard Station 50.
When we rang the buzzer at the station door we were greeted by Jamie, a tall strapping firefighter, who seemed pleasantly surprised by our small gesture. We offered cookies and he offered a tour of the station. He was very proud to show us through the quiet facility including Engine 50, including all the bells, whistles, and life saving equipment.
While the rest of his team rested, Jamie told us that on a typical day, the number of calls range from 6-10. On July 4th though, that can double. He said it’s possible that they could be out 20 times, mostly in the evening.
Our short tour ended with a few pictures and a warm handshake from Jamie. “Thanks for thinking of us,” he said. I told him we were just very happy that the firefighters were there for us, today and everyday. I also promised that, with luck, we wouldn’t be needing their services any time soon.
Firefighters do their job every single day, obscurely and without fanfare. Yet, people’s lives and property depend on them being there. A job with that kind of responsibility deserves a plate of cookies, and more.
After all, they’re looking out for us on Wednesday the fourth, and everyday after that.
Yesterday’s gift of time … Baked and brought a batch of cookies to our local firefighters who are there for us on the Fourth of July, and everyday.
Also, if you’re looking for a few ways to give back next Fourth of July, here’s a nice article from Hands On.