Firefighters dig into their own pockets to help family left in the dark
Fri, 04 Oct 2013 04:23:42 GMT —
When an electrical fire sparked up at 1519 Thompson Road in Mission, Juanita Perez called for emergency help. "When I dialed 9-1-1 and the firefighters showed up, I was very happy," she said.
The team from Engine Company #4 at the Mission Fire Department immediately located an outside meter box that shorted out and saved the home from any damage back on September 24th.
While thankful, Juanita was still left with no electricity, no means to stay somewhere else and nearly a thousand dollars in power-related repairs.
That's why the firefighters decided to take their community service to the next level.
Captain Tony Trevino, Jr. says his Lt. Gilbert Garcia, Engineer Adrian Abila and Firefighter Willie De La Garza all reached into their own pockets to put the family up into a motel for free.
They also contacted an electrician friend to make the repairs.
Captain Trevino wants to Pay it 4Ward.
"I did an email to Ryan Wolf stating how I was so honored and privileged to work with you guys," he told them at the fire station. "You guys took money out of your own pockets to help the lady into the Motel 6. It means a lot to me because we don't have to do this. You guys went beyond the call of duty of customer service. I was ecstatic that you guys pulled it off. You guys actually come to work and provide the best customer service to our citizens and our visitors. That's why I wanted to Pay it 4Ward to you guys."
To help surprise the firefighters, Melba Luna with FNB Insurance Agency, shares what prize comes along with their nominations.
"You guys are our heroes," she said. "You went above and beyond and we're here to Pay it 4Ward."
The recipients are handed $400 in cash.
Each firefighter then shares how they're feeling.
"We try to help people in every way that we can and we don't think of getting anything back," Adrian said. "This is the first time this has happened and wow."
"We all have problems," Willie said. "It's just something that I wanted to do that day and felt it."
"I've never gotten a thank you before like this," Gilbert said. "I just have no words for it."
What happens next is a true testament of their desire to do good for the community.
The group from Engine Company #4 goes back to Juanita's home to share a portion of their prize.
They give her $100.
Juanita calls it another blessing.
The firefighters call it another day on the job.
Captain Trevino says the team plans to use the rest of their prize to start a fund to help other victims in the community.