Proudly saluting our hometown heroes – Seminole County’s First Responders

Seminole County’s First Responders are our community’s everyday heroes; brave men and women who live in our communities, risking their lives to keep us safe each and every day, all while telling you it’s all part of the job.
Honoring these public servants, whose everyday acts of bravery, caring and selflessness, uplifts and strengthens our community,  and praising them, is always an act this newspaper is so very proud to do.
They are everyday citizens and ordinary people who do extraordinary things under the most difficult of circumstances – and whenever we see them we need to shake their hand and say two words – thank you.
Those two words seem far too few to express the gratitude we, and all Seminole County residents, owe local First Responders who ensure our health and safety every day. They are, though, heartfelt, and if we and others have been remiss in saying them, then three additional words – “please forgive us” – should quickly follow.
Sadly, it often takes tragic events to make each of us fully aware of the daily sacrifice from each of our First Responders. It is somewhat of an irony that it takes their presence at a tragic or stressful event to knock us out of our daily routine of being oblivious to their around-the-clock vigilance.
Our First Responders, though, put their lives on the line each time they pin their badges to their chests. There is nothing routine about their days when each seemingly innocuous call could turn lethal on a moment’s notice. Moreover, dealing with that reality provides its own brand of risk.
Similarly, firefighters responding to a blaze face the risks of injury or death each time they pit themselves against devastating flames and collapsing structures. Public safety and  EMS personnel face those same risks every time they answer a call.
So, knowing what type of person and personality it takes to be a First Responder, what do you think these everyday heroes do in their spare time? Quite frequently, they can be found in our schools or at community events, reaching out to us and our children to foster a better understanding of what it takes to keep us and our community safe.
Though we can never adequately express our gratitude, the Donalsonville News hopes to offer to more than 109 hometown everyday heroes a token of sincere appreciation in today’s Salute to Seminole County’s First Responders special edition. Thank you, and please forgive us for not saying those words sooner.

Our Heroes
by Cathy Booth

Firefighters, Sheriff, Police, State Patrol officers and EMTs too,
they answer the call of duty; they’re always there for you.
No matter the time of day, they are on their way.
Whether it is putting our fires or taking bad guys away.
They answer every call, no matter how big or small;
helping strangers every day while putting
their lives in harm’s way.
They don’t get much pay except for their gratification
of saving lives each day.
It takes a special kind of person to do the job they do.
So the next time you dial 911, remember
– they do it all for you.

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