Am I A Fireman Yet??

In Phoenix , Arizona , a 26-year-old mother stared down at her 6 year old son, who was dying of terminal leukemia.

Although her heart was filled with sadness,
she also had a strong feeling of determination.

Like any parent, she wanted her son to grow up & fulfill all his dreams. Now that was no longer possible.

The leukemia would see to that. But she still wanted her son's dream to come true.


She took her son' s hand and asked, 'Billy, did you ever think about what you wanted to be once you grew up? Did you ever dream and wish what you would do with your life?'


Mom my, 'I always wanted to be a fireman when I grew up.'

Mom smiled back and said, 'Let's see if we can make your wish come true.'

Later that day she went to her local fire Department in Phoenix , Arizona , where she met Fireman Bob, who had a heart as big as
Phoenix ..

She explained her son's final wish and Asked if it might be possible to give her 6 year-old son a ride around the block on a fire engine.

Fireman Bob said, 'Look, we can do better than that. If you'll have your son ready at seven o'clock Wednesday morning, we'll make him an honorary Fireman for the whole day.

He can come down to the fire station, eat with us, go out on all the fire calls, the whole nine yards! And if you'll give us his sizes, we'll get a real fire uniform for him, with a real fire hat - not a toy -- one-with the emblem of the Phoenix Fire Department on it, a yellow slicker like we wear and rubber boots.'

'They're all manufactured right here in Phoenix ,
so we can get them fast.'

Three days later Fireman Bob picked up Billy,
dressed him in his uniform and escorted him

from his hospital bed to the waiting hook and ladder truck.

Billy got to sit on the back of the truck and help steer it back to the fire station.

He was in heaven.

There were three fire calls in Phoenix that day
and Billy got to go out on all three calls.


He rode in the different fire engines, the Paramedic's' van, and even the fire chief's car.

He was also videotaped for the local news program.


Having his dream come true, with all the love and attention that was lavished upon him, so deeply touched Billy, that he lived three months longer than any doctor thought possible.

One night all of his vital signs began to drop dramatically and the head nurse, who believed in the hospice concept - that no one
should die alone, began to call the family members to the hospital.

Then she remembered the day Billy had spent
as a Fireman, so she called the Fire Chief and
asked if it would be possible to send a

fireman in uniform to the hospital to be with Billy as he made his transition.

The chief replied, 'We can do better than that.
We'll be there in five minutes.
Will you please do me a favor?
When you hear the sirens screaming and see

the lights flashing, will you announce over the
PA system that there is not a fire?'


'It's the department coming to see one of its finest members one more time.
And will you open the window to his room?'

About five minutes later a hook and ladder truck arrived at the hospital and extended its ladder up to Billy's third floor open window--------

16 fire-fighters climbed up the ladder into Billy's room.

With his mother's permission, they hugged him and held him and told him how much they LOVED him.






With his dying breath,
Billy looked up at the fire chief and said,
'Chief, am I really a fireman now?'

'Billy, you are, and the Head Chief,

Jesus, is holding your hand,' the chief said

With those words, Billy smiled and said,
'I know, He's been holding my hand all day, and
The angels have been singing..'

He closed his eyes
one last time.

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Replies to This Discussion

Please don't make me cry in public again!!!!
Aw shut up and pass the kleenex....
It's stuff like that that make me appreciate my job and how blessed I am to have it.
Yeah; this one has been around for awhile. I usually see it around Christmas time.
I'm not sure who the original author is, but I have to wonder if it wasn't someone affiliated with Phoenix FD.
Powerful PR, it is.
Art
That makes a firemen cry everytime we read that....... GOD Bless and KEEP'EM ROLLIN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
God bless all those fireman who took the time out of their busy schedule to make the wish of a dying boy come true. It is time like these that I am especially proud to be a fireman.
WOW!! That was AWSOME! That is really what this job is all about. I honestly can't think of anything else to say how this makes me feel but WOW!!
This is a sad sad story, but this really shows how carring we as firemen really are. This story or event shows just how happy one person can be in a terrible time in thier life, by just haveing some attention given to them. I solute the men and women of the Phoenix dept for making his last days and last minutes the best of his life. And yes Billy you really are a firemen now.
As Art says, this has been a chain letter that has been circulating around for years. I got this one back when I had AOL which was at least 6 years ago.
Regardless of whether this is a real event or just a chain letter, I have actually seen firefighter's on the news as I was growing up doing selfless acts like this. And that is what makes all of the bad days and having to listen to some people talk down on my profession worth it. Just knowing that I am lucky enough to have a place in a tradition like the fire service where it's members are like family and there are still some people out there that look up to you for what you makes finally proud that I have found my calling in life and I wouldn't trade it for a job making $2,ooo a week. And believe me I have had jobs like that, but none of them ever made me feel so proud of the road my life is on. So regardless of whether this is a true story or not, there are plenty of other true stories just like it out there that show the true heart and character of my brother's and sister's in this profession, and that is what makes me proud to call myself a firefighter.
I've seen this before, its very touching and true from what I could find out.
This has been circulated for years now and although it's a great story, I've always wondered if it was an urban legend. The story of Bobby "Bopsy" Salazar (not Billy) is not only real (albeit slightly embellished in some parts, but even more inspiring in other parts), it is significant in that it was the first Make a Wish child in 1981. Since then, of course, Make a Wish has become an international success story. They sure got a great start with the Phoenix FD, Fire Engineer (not Chief) Bob Walp and ladder truck 1 C-Shift. I've copied a URL address for the Phoenix FD newsletter recapping the history of the event in their November, 2002 issue. It was too big to attach. Thought you might enjoy it. http://www.ci.phoenix.az.us/FIRE/nov02.pdf

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