Remarkable experience in fire zone around Tuolumne

09/07/2013 12:00 AM

09/06/2013 5:36 PM

On Aug. 23 and the days that followed, our town saw a dramatic increase in population. Firefighters and law enforcement from all over, including several surrounding states, came to protect our community from the Rim fire.

It was a scary time. My 14-year-old son had a nightmare that his dad’s house was lost in flames, with his family inside.

Many packed up their belongings and left to find safety elsewhere. I, along with others, opted otherwise and stayed home to wait it out.

The events that followed have been remarkable. The devastation of losing our beautiful forests and so many homes is almost crippling. Yet, the way everyone has worked together to prevent any more tragedy is unbelievable. Firefighters, law enforcement, dozer drivers, water truck drivers, volunteers, family, friends, everyone from the littlest to the greatest, deserves an award.

The greatest compliments poured from firefighters’ lips, time and time again: “Thank you for your support. We really appreciate it.” How can that be? They are here to protect us, yet they are thanking US. Most said they had never seen anything like it before.

Strike team 4804A made a poster thanking us for our support of them. These people were amazing! The men from Woodbridge fire department shook hands with my son, played ball with him, gave him treats and autographed his thank you poster to them. His fear, thanks to these awesome people, was replaced by a smile that brought tears to my eyes.

Thank you to everyone who was involved in this life-changing experience, from the ones protecting us to the ones emptying the porta-potties to the bakers of thousands of cookies, to the sleepless volunteers feeding our displaced residents. My heart is overwhelmed!

JENNIFER HEALY

Tuolumne

Editor's Choice Videos

Join the Discussion

The Modesto Bee is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere on the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Terms of Service