International Firefighters Day: recruits chasing their dreams

International Firefighters Day: recruits chasing their dreams

YAKIMA, WA — Throw on the gear, roll out the hoses, and put out the flames. To the seasoned firefighter, it’s the normal routine on a fire call. But for three Yakima Fire Department recruits — it’s a dream in the making.

“I knew this is what I was supposed to do, so I hit it hard,” said recruit Josh Weaver.

In just under a year, these three could become full-fledged firefighters. They’ll join a number of men and women who make a difference every day, beginning with training under Alex Langbell.

“My responsibility is to train 95 firefighters to do everyhing from providing EMS to fighting fires,” said Langbell.

A veteran for more than 20 years, Langbell understands what it takes to become a firefighter.

“There’s a lot of training, there’s a lot of hard work,” he said.

And for each new recruit, their aspirations come from different inspirations.

“I wanted to be in a job where I was outside, helping people in their worst possble conditions,” said Patrick Golie.

“When people are having a bad day, it could be the worst day of their life and they need sombody to come help them, I want to be that guy,” said Brendan Rothwell.

And on a day like International Firefighters Day, it helps to remember the sacrifice and contribution they make every day to keep us safe.

Alex langbell
Yakima fire department training captain
“People look up to what we do every day,” said Langbell “It’s tough to get on, but once you get on, it’s an extremely rewarding career.”

“When it’s all said and done, and I fix whatever problem they’re having, and they have that look of gratitude on their face, it makes it all worth it,” added Rothwell.