16 May 2018 Read: 56
Friday the 4th of May, was celebrated around the world as International Firefighters’ Day. In light of this global celebration to honour the sacrifices both collectively and individually offered by the men and women in the emergency services, Letaba Fire Protection Agency (LFPA) organized a mass parade.
Mopani Fire Department and other local services including ER24 and Tzaneen Search and Rescue heeded the call by the LFPA and gathered on the driving range of the Tzaneen showgrounds at 09:00 that morning.
From there, the various teams moved in convoy through the streets of midtown Tzaneen, sirens blaring onwards toward their final destination on centerfield at Laerskool Tzaneen Primary.
“Firefighters are men and women, brothers, sisters, mothers and fathers who risk everything to save the lives of strangers trapped inside burning buildings or car wrecks. These men and women you see here today, work tirelessly to keep you and your family safe. Many of our firefighting family have in the past lost their lives to save another. For that we thank them, and we remember them,” said LFPA Chairperson, Trevor Phillips in his address to the first and second grade pupils excitedly applauding on the grandstand.
A marching display by the team members of Working on Fire was followed by a brilliantly executed mock-rescue from a vehicle wreck using the Jaws of Life. The mock-event was conducted by members of the Mopani Fire Department and ER24 paramedics.
Arguably the highlight of the day’s showcase was the firehose display which caused screams of delight from the young ones as the firemen sprayed water all across the stands from their water canon and fire hoses.
The children presented each firefighter and emergency worker with a small gift of appreciation before the ceremony was concluded. It was a day most would never forget and certainly seems a fitting tribute to the unsung heroes in our midst.