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Firefighters come together when the going gets tough

From cooking meals for the families, to planning benefits, I’m proud to be working alongside all of them


(Photo/Los Angeles County Fire Department)

By Scott Ziegler

There aren’t many people out there who embrace their coworkers as their second family. Most people go to work and make friends, but not true family members.

The fire service is different. I think it’s one of the greatest parts of our job. We acquire this massive extended family, and with family comes support. This extends our support system throughout life. When something happens, we have the guys at our firehouse to lend a hand. And we normally don’t even need to ask for it.

Your roof is leaking? Need a new furnace? Hot water tank took a dive? Someone on the job has the capabilities to fix your problem for the cost of materials and some beer. Sure, you are probably going to have to help with the heavy lifting, but it beats going into massive debt for the labor. All you really have to do is mention the problem and someone is most likely going to get a recovery team organized to fix it.

But what about the real problems — when life comes crashing down on you, and maybe even your family? Those dark times when it seems like there is no way out of what you are going through — the sicknesses, the injuries, the loss of jobs … and cancer. These are the things that cause real hardship. And when brothers face these hardships, that‘s when the guys really seem to step up. The things I have seen guys do for other firefighters, in the name of brotherhood, is enough to bring a grown man to tears. And I mean that.

My firehouse has had a rough couple of months. We lost two of our beloved members, and another is currently helping his wife fight the greatest battle of her life … all the while still coming to work to protect the citizens of this city. The way the guys at my house have pulled together for the families of these firefighters is incredible. From cooking meals for the families, to planning benefits, I’m proud to be working alongside all of them.

Most people can’t say those things about their work place. Believe me, we know how lucky we are.

Stay safe guys.

Uniform Stories features a variety of contributors. These sources are experts and educators within their profession. Uniform Stories covers an array of subjects like field stories, entertaining anecdotes, and expert opinions.