Florida Vacation in a ’62 Ford

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…We used to get in my Dad’s ’62 Ford, sit in the driveway and drive to Florida. The trip would take ten minutes or so. If we were lucky, and quick, we could swipe the keys and turn the car on, and listen to the AM radio during our travels. I must have listened to […]

Big Man/Little Woman

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At first she didn’t like me, wouldn’t listen to a word I said. She didn’t want to come with us, wanted to stay right there at the shelter. The folks who run the soup kitchen thought otherwise. They had a hundred homeless people hungry for lunch and had work to do; no time to play […]

Doing the Job

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Doing the Job 08/13/2015 Fire Engineering By Michael Morse It was a two-story cinderblock construction, commercial, unoccupied structure on a busy city street at 4:50 in the afternoon. Quitting time was 5 p.m. Smoke poured from the roof, and fire was visible on side 2. Lieutenant Steve Schora was out of the officer’s seat before […]

What’s the worst thing you have ever seen?

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Sometimes people ask me what the worst thing I’ve seen is. It’s not their fault, I’m pretty good at acting like nothing bothers me. I see them, all of them. I see the girl teetering on the edge of the bridge, see her face, see the anguish, the resolution, the despair just before she lets […]

More than a hundred died at The Station Fire

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“Don’t you make fun of me!” she shouted at the super market customers who walked past her. People came and went, some gawking, some ignoring, some just glancing our way. A spilled gallon of milk rested between her legs, a bag of groceries sat next to her, filled with what she had planned to be […]

9 out of 10

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“It’s no big deal,” she said, “just a little pain in the middle of my chest.” “How much pain, scale of 1-10?” “Nine.” “That can be a big deal.” “I didn’t want to bother you boys.” “Trust me, you are no bother. If you wait to call for two days again, then I’ll be bothered.” […]

Engine Co. EMS, treating impaired consciousness

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      Impaired consciousness is a legitimate medical emergency. Try not to become jaded. Cynicism breeds contempt, which leads to poor patient care. A person’s mental state may have been compromised, likely by his own hand, but beneath intoxication lies the person that will reappear when the substance that caused the impairment wears off. […]

Strategies for Helping a Suicidal Person

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Sunday, 1230 hrs, dispatched to a home on Wickenden Street for an emotional female. Arrive on scene to find female crying on front stairs. She points to a door. It leads to a basement. At the bottom of the stairs, next to the washer and dryer is a boy hanging dead from the ceiling joist. […]

Survival

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My career was nuts.   The patient is a twenty-two year old, intoxicated, emotional, possibly suicidal male. He’s six feet tall, weighs 250. He’s been drinking and fighting for two days. His clothes are torn, he smells like a cow and is soaked with sweat. His eyes are going in different directions. His mother states […]

The Old Man

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Alone with his thoughts most of the time, he sits in his room and doesn’t make much of a fuss. The staff lets him be, figures he is content. There are plenty of other patients to care for in the nursing home, ladies mostly, older men are the minority. He gets visitors, not often, but […]

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