Letter to the Editor

Your view: It's in their blood

Thursday, June 10, 2004

When a firefighter is off duty, most people think they leave their boots and hat at work. That is not the case with a friend and good neighbor of mine. Ricky Rapert of Sikeston was finishing up some yard work, and fixing to lie down before his shift, when he smelt that very familiar odor of danger. He looked up into the bright sunny sky to see a cloud of smoke billowing from a neighbor's house. "This smell" he said, is something that you will never forget, and immediately makes you think of 911. Mr. Rapert dashed to his phone, made the call, and gave the necessary information to the dispatcher to get the wheels in motion. Most people would have stopped there, but not him. Rick stretched his own garden hose across a half-acre lot and started to work on the fire himself. When he had it under control he ran to a neighbor and told them to make calls to the owner and notify them and then ran back to finish securing the scene before the local fire department arrived. Benny Thurston, Fire chief of Miner Fire Department said that he saved the house. If Rick Rapert had not used, "What was in his Blood" as a firefighter that house would have been lost. I am glad he is my neighbor.

Steve Lawson