Fox Creek’s 24 member team, volunteer fire department meet weekly to practice, train and are available 24 hours, seven days a week, without a second thought.
“It’s a great way to give back to the community,” said Firefighter of 2010, Mike Pasula.
He joined the local department in June 2005. In that time he has received the Firefighter of the Year award/2007 and the Officer’s Choice Award/2006.
Mike was inspired to be a volunteer firefighter by his grandfather; a career retired firefighter in Kitchener, Ontario.
In his late teens, Mike worked as a Forest Firefighter and took his job protecting the forest and its inhabitants seriously.
“Mike has always been like a little kid when it comes to fire trucks and fire stations. On our trips to Edmonton Mike points out each and every fire truck we see whether it is going to a call, pulling into a hall or just driving around. It is like he is seeing one for the first time every time. A trip to Winnipeg last year, to pick up the town’s new fire truck, Mike was very excited as he got to visit a place that actually builds the fire trucks,” said his wife Kerrianne.
In January 2010, Mike underwent surgery to have a bone tumour in his femur removed. This involved a donor bone being transplanted and his fibula being grafted to produce blood flow at the transplant site. He was unable to put weight on his leg for eight weeks and it was another six months before he was able to walk unaided.
During this time he was completely committed to the department. He may not have always been able to participate fully in all practices but he was present and continues to be a dedicated member.
A father of three, Mike’s entire family is extremely proud of him and his commitment to the department. His employer is very encouraging. “I wouldn’t be able to do what I do or be as dedicated, without support,” said Mike.
A fellow lieutenant said, “You could never question his dedication.”
Mike encourages others to volunteer, “It is the highest level of volunteer services, volunteering is the right thing to do – groups would not run without volunteers.”
Fox in FOCUS salutes our volunteers and hats off to the Fire Department for your hours of dedication, protection and service to the community.
By Matt Richardson
The pager rings out, “there’s work to be done”.
We all know, someone’s dialed 9-1-1.
In the heat of day, or the dead of night.
It is never a good time, to start the fight.
Always willing to go, without a thought.
Hoping you’ve learned, from the training taught.
House fire, car accident, or VSA.
We will not falter, or be led astray.
With all our hearts pounding, and “air packs” donned.
Smelling adrenaline, brotherly bond.
The scene could be dark, without a sound.
No smoke, or body, ever be found.
Mayhem and chaos, the next roster call.
Flames and death greet us, we’ve seen it all.
Roll up the hose and gear, or pack the “jaws”
Trying to determine, “what was the cause?”
All in a days work, and always without a fear.
Your local firefighter – a volunteer.
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