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Thursday, July 22, 2010

Today I saw a Soldier Cry

   O-Dark-early in the morning.  Cuddled in bed, dreaming of home.  Know that soon the day will begin and will have to leave my comfy sanctuary.  Had been a crazy shift the day before... a couple fires...one of which we still have no clue what was burning...and a minor trauma from a fall.  Hot and so bright your eyes would hurt if you forgot your shades.  The Air Conditioner was a welcome sleep-buddy.  Still wished I was home... 
    BANG! BANG! BANG!  Torn from slumber by the Chief hitting the door... jumped outta bed, just as if the tones had sounded... "Hey Cap! We've got some sort of an emergency at such and such location... and radios are down..."  Well, that's a hell of an ecouraginf wake-up....  "I'm on it, Chief"
   Threw my uniform on... picture Clark Kent in the phone booth... meet my driver at the truck... que dramatic chase scene music.... ok.. maybe just the scream of the siren tearing through the quiet as the sun is just peaking over the horizon... (sure there were some people that were not so  enthused about that).  No clue what the situation was.. just headed that way.. hoping we'd get some intel... still no sign of smoke.. hmmmm...
    As we round the corner.. Chief is hollerin an the radio to get the medics en-route.. CPR is in progress...  Well.. I guess no need for Coffee this morning to get my jump-start.
    Arriving on scene... doing my scene size up and safety check... the only thing I notice is the streak of what I assume to be yellow bunker pants screamin across the sand.... why yes.. bunker pants.. I was right...  My youngest firefighter with jump kit on the shoulder and AED in hand.... where the heck is he going ?  Finally.. for the first time of the morning... my driver.. who until this point I assumed was still asleep... spoke up "Hey cap.. this doesn't look so good... you might wanna get up there..."
  As soon as the blast of air from the paring break sounds.. I'm gloved up and gone... trying not to look rushed.. I'm the Cap.. gotta stay cool, right... at least until I get the full picture as to what is going on...
    Man down in a confined area... got 2 firefighters, or pretzels, not sure which yet, in this area with him, AED Hooked up.. compressions looking good.... then I notice this piece of equipment they are in is a giant metal box... with what appears to be an extremelt heavy "lid" being held jus above their heads buy nothing more than a small jack-stand... "Um.. guys... you're doing a great job... but... can we get him moved outside BEFORE you shock... oh ya.. and before this falls on your noggins ?"  It's amazing how quickly a patient can be boarded and moved to safety without ever missing a compression....
   CPR continued.. and I began my assessment.. this is gonna be a long day.  2 sharing compressions, 2 of us on airway... this battle was not going to be given up any time soon... we owed it to this soldier... we owed it to his family... we owed it to his men.  Still no shockable rythm.....
   I was relieved on airway... and began to look around at the warriors watching us... the fear... the hope on their faces.  These were his men... men who held each others lives in their hands daily... I needed to know what happened... Pretty sure this was not a heart attack.. had to be more going on... hoping what I had noticed with the equipment earlier had nothing to do with it...
   I see a soldier.. on his knee... obviously asking for a little help... help we'd greatly welcome... I asked this soldier.. who obviously needed to be part of the solution... what had happened...
    He looked at me, tears in his eyes... and simply said.. My Sergeant saved my life.... from his story, it appeared to me that the man we were so determined to save... had leaped in harms was to push this young soldier from the jeaws of peril, taking the full blow to himself.  Obviously respected by his men.. he gave everything for them...
    He watched as he explained the events.. watched the fight to save his leader... then " Shock Advised" and the wonderful sound of the box as it charges... shock was delivered.. and CPR resumed as his men watched and prayed.
   We brought that sergeant back that morning... I'm sure there was more to it than just our determination.  As we pulled in to the ER, he had a rythm and pulses, was fighting the tube and trying to breathe on his own...

For as long as I live.. I will never forget the tears in that warriors eyes.... the hardened look of battle gone... and just the hope and prayers for the Sergeant who saved his life...

Sometimes people forget.. our soldiers are no different than any of us... they have families, they have friends, they love and are loved.   Our soldiers just give a little more... to protect us and our nation.... and each other.

Today I saw a Soldier cry.... and I will never forget why I'm here

1 comment:

  1. Gave me chills...these days most military stories do. Glad to hear that it had a happy ending.

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