Two volunteer firefighters in Stafford County, Virginia, were suspended after they saved an 18-month-old girl who was having a seizure last Saturday because they used their fire engine to transport her to a hospital instead of waiting for an Ambulance.
Captain James Kelley and Sgt. Virgil Bloom from the Falmouth Volunteer Fire Department in Fredericksburg were the first responders to a call that came from the toddler’s father saying that his daughter was having a seizure according to WTTG-TV.
Capt. Kelley said it would have taken at least 10 to 15 minutes before the nearest medic could arrive and provide assistance to the toddler, so they decided to take care of her themselves. They had oxygen in the fire truck so they put her on it and provided assistance to her which ultimately saved her life. Although an ambulance requested to meet the firefighters near the hospital to finish the journey, Kelley ultimately denied the request because he said time would be wasted waiting for them.
Brian Nunamaker, the girl’s father credited the firefighters’ quick thinking and actions with saving his daughter’s life. He said:
“As a parent, you feel extremely helpless to be unable to assist the most important person in the world [your child] during such a time of emergency,” Nunamaker said, according to WTTG. “Worst case scenarios run through your head while you are hoping for the best. The eternity of waiting for help to arrive was surprisingly non-existent in this situation. I was surprised at how quickly help had arrived in the form of a fire truck.”
“My wife and I feel terrible for the fallout that has happened to these two gentlemen”. “They simply had the best interests for our daughter’s care in mind. We are extremely thankful they made the decisions they did, and that our daughter is back home with us doing well. The actions of these men represent a dedication to their mission, and a deep concern of doing what is best for the people they are serving. In our eyes, they are heroes.”
However, Kelley and Bloom were suspended after the incident because they used the firetruck which is licensed as a non-transport unit.
“I would not hesitate, I would do the exact same thing 100 percent 10 times out of 10,”. “I sleep well at night knowing I provided good care to that young lady.”