Thank You Gavin, For the Wave and a Smile

Thursday, November 27, 2008 |

LAFD Truck 87 (1988 Seagrave reserve). Click to learn more...Though Los Angeles Firefighters often need to focus on critical tasks - including arriving safely at more than 2,100 emergency responses each day, we never want you to think we are unknowing or unappreciative of the many kind gestures you offer throughout the year.

While we sadly can't acknowledge every friendly wave, hearty 'thumbs-up' or warm smile, we want you to know we both see and sense them, and that they mean a great deal more than words can say.

Last Friday, young Gavin Hand was safely seated in his mother's car when a fire truck passed by. But it wasn't just any fire truck that caught the 2 year-old's eye and caused him to wave.

It was a 1988 Seagrave tractor-drawn Aerial Ladder Truck, the last of a generation that places the firefighter "tillerman" in the open elements; but to young Gavin, it was far more.

It was the thing that a young boy's dreams are made of. It was the fire truck he would never forget, thanks to a friendly wave from his new friend the fireman.

While we have amazed taxpayers with our ability to maintain these vehicles in daily service for more than 20 years, our truest gratification comes from the trusting smiles of young people like Gavin.

Students Salute LAFD Captain Lane Kemper. Click to view more...For whether secured in a car seat, or amassed on the sidewalk to praise a colleague on his way home, we are deeply honored of the trust in firefighters that you convey to future generations.

Like Gavin's Mom, we hope you'll soon schedule your visit to a Neighborhood Fire Station, so that we can thank you personally for the support and trust so essential to our being.

On this Thanksgiving Day, kindly accept our wishes for a safe and joyous holiday season - and please never hesitate to wave!

Submitted by Brian Humphrey, Spokesman
Los Angeles Fire Department


Ashley said...

Wonderful blog.

I hope the on-duty crew of the LAFD has a safe and happy Thanksgiving today.

LAFD Media and Public Relations said...


Thank you for the kind words, and our heartiest holiday wishes to you.

We are indebted to Gavin's mom for sharing two of the photos seen in this blog post, which she captured safely from her car and sent our way (with apologies for the spotted windshield). Not to worry we say, as she truly captured the moment.

Respectfully Yours in Safety and Service,

Brian Humphrey
Public Service Officer
Los Angeles Fire Department

Jason Hand said...

Brian, thank you so much for sharing the photos I sent you. Your blog made the memories even more special. All our family will and friends will be visiting this blog and I know they will all be touched. Thank you for taking the time to personally invite us to the station to see the ladder truck in person, we can not wait!! And once again, thank you and your crew for always keeping our Earth safe from dangerous fires and risking your own lives, it is really a special job you have! Happy Holidays to you, your family, and the rest of you crew!
Your New Friend,
Jamiel Hand :^)

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