Over the course of a few days in November and December, I had the privilege of documenting the three crews that make up the Mount Vernon Fire and EMS Department.
“The most important attribute of a firefighter is the willingness to put service above self to complete any given task. Firefighters have to be problem solvers with the ability to make critical decision in the height of tense situations.
Chief Chad Christopher
During that time, I witnessed firsthand the family-like community that makes up this unique work environment where each crew works 24-hour at a time. I got to witness not only how they maintain their equipment, and train for all possible contingencies, but also see them in action.
Their deep care for the community was evident, their service going above and beyond the intensity of a fire and walking into the daily lives of our everyday citizens. They are a vital pulse within this community. Fighting fires and braving the heat and dangers associated with such work is just one piece of this impact. From following up on a 911 call to take someone to the hospital, helping an elderly man or woman get up from a fall to constant preventive training, inspections, and community engagement, each team was always in constant movement around Mount Vernon.
This is why moments of calm became some of the most powerful to capture, exposing the relationships behind the skillful coordination I witnessed on emergency runs. It was a true privilege to see them in action and recognize their commitment to service that they provide in Mount Vernon.
At this holiday season, we owe them all our great appreciation and gratitude.