Christmas With Firemen

by Bianca Parra

FireStation 58 on Deerfield, right here in Hunters Creek.

On December 11th, I went to Station 58 on Deerfield Boulevard with the National Honor Society. I had the chance to spend time with local firefighters and keep them company during the holidays. It was an incredible experience and I got to learn more about what it is like to be a firefighter during these times.

When the group and I first got there, we wandered around the station, taking a view of what was inside. There was a living area with a few recliners, a TV, and a large table where they hold important meetings. To the left, there was a small kitchen with 2 fridges and rows of cabinets for whatever supplies they need. Further ahead there was a small nook area, following with a garage where the trucks are stored. Behind the station, there is a small basketball court where the firemen play pick up games.

After the group had introduced ourselves to them, we sat down and played plenty rounds of UNO and ate pizza, making jokes with them the entire evening. We all had brought snacks and games keeping us entertained for our time there. They passed down some knowledge of how to play basic poker, and a few of us participated as we slowly picked up the rules. After a few more rounds of poker, we played more card games before they received an emergency call.

Luckily, it was not an emergency and the firemen were back in a half hour. We asked about the situation and soon began asking the firemen other questions about what work was like for them. One of the firemen explained that he was able to train to get his EMT license through dual enrollment. They explained to us how every station receives emergency calls, but the station that is closest to the emergency is usually given the task. They told us some particularly gory stories about some of the rescues they have but didn’t share all the details to preserve our innocent ears. Day to day there might not be much for them to do, however once in a while they have the opportunity to save lives. It was exciting to hear these stories and to see what these brave men have been through.

I felt that this was a good learning experience about community service. Although many people donate money or give gifts for Christmas, rarely anyone donates their time. Especially for those who need it the most. What I learned that night was how important it is to keep the holiday spirit and to spread the love and cheer to those who are unable to be with their families during the holidays–a valuable lesson.