Our Opinion: Our local heroes

January 04, 2002

In recent weeks Imperial Valley firefighters have been incredibly busy, battling a number of house and apartment fires that have left many families displaced and some people fighting for their lives.

We applaud our local firefighters for their heroic efforts to save lives and homes. Firefighters put themselves on the line when they are called to structure fires and in the number of recent fires, firefighters have proven they are willing to do all it takes to battle fires — even risk their own lives.

Firefighters have come in for deserved praise in recent months in this country, and their actions in our area over the last few weeks have shown many firefighters truly are American heroes.

Case in point: Two El Centro firefighters ran into a burning house to try to save a 75-year-old woman who had succumbed to smoke. That the woman is alive today is completely the result of the firefighters' valiant efforts.


Firefighters also recently saved an apartment complex and faced a mobile home fire in El Centro, battled a blaze at an Imperial home, fought two home fires in Bombay Beach, and, most recently, dealt with a home fire started when the Christmas lights were plugged in on an old Christmas tree.

The Seeley blaze left a mother and her three children in critical condition with first- and second-degree burns. This should serve as a reminder that it is past time to get rid of this season's Christmas trees. The old, dry trees are dangerous. They ignite quickly and such fires can be devastating.

It is common for children to not want to let go of the holidays. Holding onto Christmas trees a little longer may seem like a way to do that for kids. Parents, however, have to draw the line.

We also want to give plaudits to Gold Cross Ambulance Service for its quick response to provide medical attention to fire victims. The ambulance crews' efforts help save lives, as do those of doctors and nurses at the hospitals.

The Imperial Valley American Red Cross chapter also has been busy over the past few weeks. Red Cross employees have made it their duty to be at the scenes of the fires, rendering a comforting hand to fire victims who have lost their homes and possessions and helping firefighters with their needs as they battle blazes.

We are fortunate that we do have organizations that will look out for people's needs, and because of a slew of recent fires, we have many people in need right now.

Imperial Valley Press Online Articles