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"We get the call, we're going to be there," the unwavering commitment of volunteer firefighters

Posted at 11:35 PM, Mar 26, 2020
and last updated 2020-03-26 23:35:59-04

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WKBW) — The spirit of #BuffaloStrong is alive and well in our first responders, particularly the volunteers.

What drives the unwavering commitment?

“I love what I do, I love helping my community, no matter what, so it’s not really a job or career it’s something I love to do," said Joseph Dahm, the Assistant Fire Chief of the U-Crest Fire Department.

The same goes for Bowmansville Fire Chief Thomas Trzepacz, he's been with the department for more than two decades.

“We meet people potentially on the worst day of their lives, with everything going on we still gotta continue our service," he said. "We’ve definitely changed a lot of things, but we still got a commitment to the residents of the towns of Lancaster and Bowmansville to protect them and respond.”

He said more people are answering the call.

“We have a lot of people out of work right now, a lot of people off, and we’ve actually seen an increase in the amount of people coming down to answer alarms and help us out," Trzepacz said.

New precautions for the departments include less staff in a truck, sanitizing them after every alarm, and limiting access to the inside of the firehouse. Dahm said the last one has been the toughest change for him.

“When you go on a call, you come back, we’re like a big family we want to joke around with each other, we want to have fun." Dahm said. "Now after the call is over, we’re going right home, we get back the trucks are in order we’re gone," Dahm said.

U-Crest said it's looking for donations of sanitizer, gloves, and wipes. Both chiefs said the biggest way you could help them, however, is staying home.

Because if they're not healthy, they can't help you.

“We get the call, we’re going to be there," said Dahm.