A Very Special Firefighter

The 26-year-old mother stared down at her 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 and
fulfill all his dreams. Now that was no longer
possible. The leukemia would see to that.

But she still wanted her son's dreams 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?"

"Mommy, 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 six-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 fire 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 video taped 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 just the fire department coming to see one
of it's finest members one more time. And will you open
the window to his room?......Thanks."

About five minutes later a hook and ladder truck arrived at
the hospital, extended its ladder up to Billy's third floor open
window and 16 firefighters 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," the chief said. With those words, Billy
smiled and closed his eyes one last time.

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Comment by Fire Chick on January 19, 2009 at 11:55pm
great story
Comment by Elizabeth on January 19, 2009 at 11:52pm
That hit my heart i love it
Comment by Justin Buck on January 19, 2009 at 11:23pm
this is the best story i have ever heard and read

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