|Arlene Pretty - Surrey Fire Service - Retired|
Who Am I?
I am the voice that calms the mother when she calls stating; her child has started a fire
while playing with matches. Or the cooking pot on top of the stove caught on fire.
I am the invisible hand that holds and comforts the person reporting
their friend has been injured in a mountain climbing accident.
I am the friend who talks to the disgruntled caller when they cannot
breathe during open burning season.
I sent help when you had your first automobile accident.
I am the one who tries to obtain the information from callers to ensure that the scene
is safe for those I dispatch to emergencies – all the while anticipating the worst
and hoping for the best.
I am the psychologist who readily adapts my language and tone of voice
to serve the needs of my callers with compassion and understanding.
I am the ears that listen to the needs of all those I serve.
I have heard the screams of faceless people I never will meet, nor forget.
I have cried at the atrocities of mankind and rejoiced at the miracles of life.
I was there, though unseen by my comrades in the field during the most trying emergencies.
I have tried to visualize the scene to coincide with the voices I heard.
At times I am not privy to the outcome of a call, and so I wonder…
I am the one who works weekends, strange shifts and holidays. Children do not say they
want my job when they grow up. Yet, I am at this vocation by choice.
Those I help very seldom call back to say thank you.
Still there is comfort in the challenge, integrity, and purpose of my employment.
I am thankful to provide such a meaningful service.
I am a mother, father, sister, brother, son or daughter.
I am where you need me and still here when you don’t.
The dispatch room is never empty, and the work here is never done.
I am always on call. The training is strenuous, demanding and endless.
No two days at work are ever the same.
Who am I?
I am a Fire Dispatcher.