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A Road Trip – A Lollipop Moment

February 13, 2012

I don’t know the number of long distant ambulance transfers I have taken in my life – let’s just say the number is high. I’ve learned a lot about life during these trips. A recent one was from Stafford Hospital to Great Bend Regional.

The patient was a retired firefighter named – Joe Reboul. During the trip, Joe and I talked about his life experience – mostly about his career.

Joe was in the Navy and served during the Korean War. I asked him if he liked that time and his comment was, “Oh Yea!”

The next stop in Joe’s career was the fire service. I asked Joe what advice he would give a young person wanting a career in the fire service. His reply – “Don’t do it!” But, he was just kidding.

Joe said, “It takes a pretty special person to be a firefighter – and it aint’ for everybody.” Joe said that he would do it all again if given the chance.

The first fire truck Joe rode in was an Old Red Seagraves – an open cab model. As a matter of fact, when Joe came on the fire department, all the fire trucks were open cab style.

The most memorable incident Joe could recall was a house fire in Arlington back in the 60’s. Two children perished in the basement of that house.

Then there were the two babies he helped deliver. The first was delivered in the front yard. Unfortunately, this was a house fire and the mother had been rescued, but succumbed to the fire. Luckily, the baby survived.

The second baby was born in the back seat of a car. Both mother and baby made it through that “outside the hospital childbirth experience” in flying colors.

During that trip to Great Bend, Joe gave me a “Lollipop Moment.”

Let me explain.

I watched a short presentation the other day by a man named Drew Dudley. Drew’s message was that – “Every day, unbeknownst to us, we impact somebody in a wonderful way.” He called it “everyday leadership” and he gave the moment that this happens a name – “A Lollipop Moment.”

Joe passed away several days ago. Before he left, he gave many of us a “lollipop moment” – many more than he would ever know. I was the recipient of one.

“Thank’s for the lollipop Joe – we’ll miss you.”

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