I don’t want to be a hero. Being a hero means I haft to do something that scares the hell out of me. It means I haft to go into this building that is fully engulfed in flames.

My heart is pounding I can hear it in my ears, and I haft to steady my hand so I tighten my grip on the hooligan bar. I look at my partner in the eye and give him the nod that I am ready, as he does the same.

I want to tell him not to worry I want fail. But, guys don’t do that and he couldn’t hear me over the roar of the flames and hum of the engines even if I tried.

I won’t fail, I can’t fail, there is someone in this house that knows I am coming for them, my partner who depends on me for his safety. The dozen more outside depend on me too. If I freeze up now someone has to come get me putting more in danger. I won’t fail!

I feel his hand on my back and that is the signal to go, I take one last breath of cool air from my air pack, swallow the lump and my foot crosses the threshold of the door. There are no more thoughts of fear or what if’s, just what has to be done.

I don’t do this job for glory, if you’re a reporter pass me up and talk to someone else, you won’t get anything from me. I am not in this for thrills even though my wife is convinced I am an adrenalin junkie. I do this job for my brother and sister’s that do this too, for that person counting on me to come get them.

I won’t fail; my brothers and sisters know this, and the person I am coming from know this, in spite of fears. Even if I never said anything about it to anyone they know. And now you know.

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