Friday, September 23, 2011

A Heartfelt Story ~ Am I A Fireman Yet?

I was a Hospice Home Health Nurse for 6 years and during that time I had a little boy patient who was dieing of terminal cancer. He was only 3 years old at the time. As I cared for him Ifound him to be amazing. Just a few days before his passing he was up running around sword fighting with his brother. His parents were a wonderment as they help him understand what was happening to him. He was well prepared to meet Jesus. This little one was such an inspiration to me. He was so brave and had to go throughso much pain. At the dedication of his grave everyone present sent a balloon off into the air to celebrate his life and his joy at being able to now run around without the pains of earth life.

I am sure this is why this heartfelt story touched me. I have read this story more than once and still have a need to have Kleenex handy. I had a desire today to share it with you; grab the Kleenex and know that this is a true story.


In Phoenix , Arizona , a 26 year-old mother stared down  at her 6 year-old son, who was dying of terminal leukemia..   Although her heart was filled with sadness, She also had a strong feeling of determination. Like any parent, she wanted her son to grow up &
Fulfill all his dreams. Now, that was no longer possible.. The leukemia would see to that. But she still wanted her son's dream to come true.. She took her son' s hand and asked, 'Billy, did you ever think about what you wanted to be once you grew up? Did you ever dream and wish what you would do with your life?' Mommy, 'I always wanted to be a fireman when I grew up.'Mom smiled back and said, 'Let's see if we can make your wish come true.'

Later that day she went to her local fire Department in Phoenix , Arizona , where she met Fireman Bob, who had a heart as big as Phoenix ! She explained her son's final wish and asked if it might be possible to give her 6 year-old son a ride around the block on a fire engine. Fireman Bob said, 'Look, we can do better than that. If you'll have your son ready at seven o'clock Wednesday morning, we'll make him an honorary Fireman for the whole day.  He can come down to the fire station, eat with us, go out on all the fire calls, the whole nine yards! And if you'll give us his sizes, we'll get a real fire uniform for him, with a real fire hat - not a toy -- one-with the emblem of the Phoenix Fire Department on it, a yellow slicker like we wear and rubber boots. 'They're all manufactured right here in Phoenix ,  so we can get them fast.'

Three days later Fireman Bob picked up Billy, dressed him in his uniform and escorted him from his hospital bed to the waiting hook and ladder truck. Billy got to sit on the back of the truck and help steer it back to the fire station. He was in heaven. There were three fire calls in Phoenix that day and Billy got to go out on all three calls. He rode in the different fire engines, the Paramedic's' van, And even the fire chief's car. He was also videotaped for the
Local news program.

Having his dream come true, with all the love and attention that was lavished upon him, so deeply touched Billy, that he lived three months longer than any doctor thought possible. One night all of his vital signs began to drop dramatically and the head nurse, who believed in the hospice concept-that no one should die alone - began to call the family members to the hospital. Then she remembered the day Billy had spent as a Fireman, so she called the Fire Chief and Asked if it would be possible to send a fireman in uniform to the hsopital to be with Billy as he made his transition.

The chief replied, 'We can do better than that.  We'll be there in five minutes. Will you please do me a favor? When you hear the sirens screaming and see the lights flashing, will you announce over the PA system that there is not a fire?' 'It's the department coming to see one of its finest members one more time. And will you open the window to his room?' About five minutes later a hook and ladder truck arrived at the hospital and extended its ladder up to Billy's third floor open window-------- 16 fire-fighters climbed up the ladder into Billy's room.

With his mother's permission, they hugged him and held him and told him how much they LOVED him. With his dying breath, Billy looked up at the fire chief and said, 'Chief, am I really a fireman now?' 'Billy, you are, and the Head Chief,  Jesus, is holding your hand,' the chief said. With those words, Billy smiled and said, 'I know, He's been holding my hand all day, and
The angels have been singing.'

My Gifts ~
. thankful for all the sweet moments as a hospice nurse
. a healthy blind granddaughter
. grateful for tender heartfelt stories that inspire me
. thankful every day for all my blessings both temporal and spiritual
. grateful for all of the brothers and sisters in our Inner City Ward
. thankful that I have the opportunity to serve these humble people
. grateful for the safety on the freeway early this morning
. thankful that my dear sister friend's medical test went well this morning
. thankful for our two little dogs that always welcome us home with a wagging tail
. grateful that I finished the Book of Mormon last week so I can start over again.
. thankful that our General Conference is this weekend and I can hear  and see our prophet    and apostles speak
. grateful for the Relief Society organization that I belong too. 
. grateful to have served in this wonderful organizaton
. thankful for the new Relief Soceity book entitled; "Daugters Of My Kingdom". 
. grateful for the time served as a secretary to the Daughters of the Utah Pioneers" target="_blank">" >


singing/granny said...

Thanks LeAnn! That was a sweet story! And it means a lot to me since our son died of neuroblastoma at the age of six. He was also a special little boy, and I am sure he is well acquainted with his Savior! Blessings to you! Melody

Darlene said...

wow! I can tell you right now, my tears are falling. What a very poignant story, and what a great fire department Phoenix has to be able to do something like that.

I don't know how you could stand to be a hospice nurse. I just don't think I could have done that. I think it takes a very special kind of person to be able to see so many people die. Not that we have to fear death. I certainly don't fear my own, but it is so touching to have to see someone you love die. I haven't had much experience with this, but I did have a very special friend who was in hospice care and we did visit him just a day before he died and it was heart-wrenching for me and for Dick. Maybe it was because he was such a young person, not even quite thirty.

It just lets me know once again, what a special lady you are LeAnn.

Now, I just hope that this will go through.

Darlene said...

It did. I wish I could know why some go through so easily and some get lost in blog heaven.

Marie said...

Oh gosh Leanne, I am sitting here with tears in my eyes. My youngest son's best friend died of brain cancer when he was 12. He'd been battling it since he was 5. It was so very heartbreaking. Thank you for sharing such an inspirational story. xxoo

Mom of 12 said...

Cancer is such a terrible disease! And it will take anyone. Thanks for your kind comments on my blog.

Cheryl @ The Farmer's Daughter said...

What a great story, LeAnn! I'm glad you mentioned Kleenex because I was glad I had one nearby. What a wonderful fire department, too. Wow. Thanks for sharing this. Have a great day!

Sue said...

What a touching story this is. Thanks for sharing it!


Galen Pearl said...

Oh my, I don't often start crying when I read blogs, but I am crying now! What a moving story on so many levels. Look at how many people participated in helping his dream come true. Not just people who loved him, or people whose job it was to care for him. Lots of people! And it reaffirmed what I already knew about firefighters. They are not only heroes of safety. They are heroes of the heart. Makes we want to go hug a firefighter right now.

Heidi said...

With tears streaming down my face, I want to thank you for sharing this touching story. What a strong little boy, and fantastic people who surrounded him with love.

I am new to the NOBH crew and wanted to stop in to say hello and thank you for linking up at NOBH!

Anonymous said...

Hi! This post couldn't be written any better! Reading this post reminds me of my old room mate!

He always kept chatting about this. I will forward this article to him.
Fairly certain he will have a good read. Many thanks for sharing!


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