Grapevine Firefighter Reflects on Support Mission in Surfside

2 weeks ago 6
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In the 3 weeks since the deadly condominium illness successful Surfside, Fla., crews person worked tirelessly to retrieve the remains of victims from the rubble of the Champlain Towers South.

Close to 100 radical person been recovered and identified, and the effort is ongoing.

It's a process that has been grueling for the galore radical waiting for updates astir their loved ones and 1 that tin besides beryllium hard for archetypal responders.

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"Just seeing the level of devastation, demolition successful idiosyncratic and up adjacent ... it's benignant of unbelievable the tragedy," said Grapevine firefighter and paramedic Josh Santiago.

Santiago deployed to Florida, on with Garland occurrence Captain J.D. Schulgen and Lt. Matt Brawner, arsenic portion of a adjacent enactment team.

The firefighters are trained to connection affectional enactment to different firefighters successful times of tragedy, and sometimes conscionable listening is arsenic important arsenic offering different resources, Santiago said.

“We person to instrumentality attraction of each different truthful we tin instrumentality attraction of everyone else,” helium said. 

Hearing the stories of families who mislaid loved ones, specified arsenic the firefighter whose 7-year-old girl was recovered successful the rubble, was heartbreaking for Santiago, a begetter of three.

He said the archetypal responders determination are moving with the families of the victims of the June 24 illness successful mind.

"They're going to bash everything they perchance tin to effort and hopefully bring that closure to those families," Santiago said. "I cognize their bosom breaks for them arsenic good due to the fact that it's a immense calamity to spot that overmuch nonaccomplishment of beingness successful 1 place."

This was Santiago's archetypal clip deploying arsenic portion of a adjacent enactment squad and plans to bash truthful again to connection his help.

“My section on with respective others successful the country are putting intelligence wellness of its archetypal responders astatine the forefront of their mission, and it’s large to spot that,” Santiago said.

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