It’s hard to imagine that a Volunteer Fire Department that has been without a Line of Duty Death for it’s over 100 year existence, serves a community of about 2,800 residents and only had approximately 30 members could lose 9 members in a split second….but that’s exactly what happened in West, Texas this past week. This department reportedly responded to only around 120 calls per year.
Yet, these members responded without hesitation to an obviously large fire in, by far, the most hazardous property in the entire area. All they knew was that their community and its residents were facing a major emergency and they were the ones that had signed on to “protect life and property” in their town. It was not their job, but it was their duty. They knew that the only way to prevent a catastrophic disaster was to act bravely and act fast. So, they rushed to the scene and very quickly paid the ultimate price. The price that all First Responders know, in the back of their minds, that they might be called on to pay some day.
Heroes are not the ones who stand up in front of you and pound on their chests to let you know how tough and brave they are. Real heroes are born of circumstance. They are the ones who step up and answer the call without thinking of themselves when faced with choice of putting themselves in danger to assist and protect strangers or distancing themselves from the danger expecting “others” to step up. Real heroes are the “others”. These men from West, Texas are the real heroes.
So are the First Responders, doctors, nurses and good Samaritans who stepped up in Boston and its surrounding communities earlier this week. Be proud that America has so many potential heroes amongst us who are willing to place themselves in danger to assist the rest of us in our time of need. This week has certainly put the spotlight directly on the “great” qualities and character that makes this country so strong. Our willingness to stand tough and fight will always outweigh any hardships, natural or man-wrought, that we may face as a country!
God bless all those who have stood tall this past week!!