NEWTON COUNTY, Ga. - Five-year-old Forester Sanders was excited to see the firefighters walking on his property. Along with police officers, firefighters were his heroes with their big red trucks and prestigious uniforms. Nevermind that the members of the Newton County Fire Services were there because a fire destroyed part of his home, Sanders still thought the sight of them was “awesome.”
On the morning of Jan. 5, five units from the Newton County Fire Services, along with mutual aid from Covington responded to a fire at the Sanders’ home on Starsville Road. Crews on scene worked quickly to extinguish the fire but it wasn’t just the rush of water that caught Trey Sanders attention that day.
As he told firefighters who gathered with him and his family at the Newton County Fire Services Headquarters weeks later, it was the way they took care of his family and belongings that he appreciated. When Newton County Fire Services works a fire, typically they will work in teams. One team will work the fire while another works salvage.
The salvage team works to protect as much of the family’s belongings as possible. That is a standard procedure for Newton County firefighters when there is enough personnel to accommodate. In the case of the home of Trey, Ashley and Forester Sanders, the salvage team covered furniture and placed pictures in the middle of the room under a tarp to protect them from possible water damage.
Trey and Ashley Sanders told the firefighters how much they appreciated those efforts as their family faced the reality of fire and water damage to their beloved home that held so many priceless memories.
As a show of appreciation the Sanders brought lunch to all Newton County firefighters Monday, Jan. 29. Firefighters not only had a chance to eat some barbecue and all the trimmings but also receive a special gift from Forester Sanders.
Forester made a firetruck out of Legos for each Newton County fire station and presented it to each unit which was present at the lunch.
It was a chance not only for the Sanders to thank the firefighters but also for the men and women of the Newton County Fire Services to know that their efforts were appreciated by those they protect. It was also a chance for Forester to meet the firefighters who became his heroes.