Show first responders appreciation

Published 12:00 am Saturday, July 6, 2013

This week, 19 firefighters tragically lost their lives battling a wildfire in Arizona. Since then, the airwaves have been filled with stories about and tributes to the fallen men, and rightly so. They, like every person who has made it their career to protect and serve the rest of us, willingly put their lives on the line day in and day out, often with little appreciation or compensation.
Here in St. John the Baptist Parish we unfortunately have firsthand knowledge of the pain that Arizona community is experiencing. Last year two of our deputies gave their lives in service of the community. What followed was an unprecedented outpouring of support and compassion for the fallen deputies and their families as well as other members of the Sheriff’s Department.
Since then, however, those tear-filled days have given way to frustration and anger over worsening crime in St. John Parish, and unfortunately it is often these same men and women we were praising months before who bear the brunt of this frustration.
All too often we do not
appreciate what we have until it is gone, but it should not take a tragedy for first responders to earn a little appreciation.
So at this particularly patriotic time, the next time you
see a first responder, thank them for the job they do and the sacrifices they make every day. Tomorrow it may be too late.