Friday, August 29, 2008

One of the Worst Calls Possible for First Responders

As someone who works in an Emergency Medical Services field, I know that some calls are worse than others.  This call yesterday most definitely qualifies as one of the worst ...

Jewett City Toddler Dies of Gunshot Wound

Video by Dieu To/Norwich

What makes this even more horrible is that there are many, many, many people who are affected by a tragedy like this including, but not limited to, the First Responders to the scene - the police, fire, and medical personnel who responded to the call for help and arrived to find a critically wounded child whom they wanted to help more than they wanted anything in their lives at that time.

Two of my good friends, Amy and Andrew, were very involved with this call as Amy was one of the EMTs who got to the scene first as part of the ambulance crew working in Jewett City and Andrew was the paramedic that we at American dispatched to the call for a higher level of care.  Both of these people are extreme professionals and very good at their jobs but both of them were very affected by this tiny life that they did their very best to save but who later succumbed to his wounds.

My thoughts and prayers are certainly with the family of young Wyatt Matteau as they try to come to grips with this horrible, horrible tragedy but my thoughts and prayers are also with my friends who will forever have an image of this horrible day burned into their memories.   May you both find comfort and peace in knowing that you did everything you possibly could to help this young child and that you did your best.

All who responded to that horrible scene did the very best they could and I applaud all of the First Responders and thank them for doing a job that I know I could never do.  You may not have been able to save this child but think of the countless lives you have touched and the care you have given to so many others.  It's most definitely not an easy job but someone has to do it and I thank you for taking on the challenge.


  1. Anonymous7:47 AM EDT

    I think about these folks who do this a lot.

    Last year there was a horrible wreck in NW Ohio where a family died leaving one survivor. A friend who is one of the best trauma nurses in the US had to fight to save a baby. Unofrtunatley the child died from massive wounds.

    I know the emotional toll it takes to do the job, but under these circumstances... oh my!

    Hugs, thoughts and prayers... I hope these folks never lose their inner strength, continue to have faith, and God grants them tender mercies. For they do so much!

  2. So sad.
    I have always grown up around guns and bows and stuff. I don't fear them, but have been taught how to safely handle them. I can only imagine that his father must have been getting ready to go to work and the gun was on his belt on the bed or something as simple and innocent as that.

    The workers and responders who deal with this kind of thing everyday are a special breed of human. They always have my respect.

  3. How incredibly sad. :{

  4. I don't know why but tragedies always seem worse when they involve children. :(

  5. Anonymous10:07 AM EDT

    So terrible. I can only imagine the grief that everyone involved in this situation will be dealing with for a long time! I am, however intrigued to find out what happened...

  6. very sad Linda, you have to respect people who are there when these calls come in. They are hero's just like those on the street that have to see this first hand.

  7. Oh my goodness, Linda, I thought of you when I heard this story on the radio this morning.

    I was trying to place Jewett City, and thinking it was in your part of the state.

    What a horrible tragedy. The first responders on a scene like this have my utmost respect for the job they have to do.

  8. How incredibly sad. My BIL is a State Trooper and he goes to great lengths to be sure his weapons and ammo are all safely secured and away from his children because of just this sort of thing. He's also been a first responder many times. It's just heartbreaking.

  9. The toll these tragedies take on first responders is often overlooked. It can be a tough job and I am appreciative of those who have chosen to do it.

  10. A sad tale, indeed. You did a fitting tribute to your co-workers...

  11. I could never do what they do-no way. I have such respect for them all. So sad. :(

  12. People in your profession really do have a very tough, emotional job. One I don't think I could do. Such a terrible thing that happened to this little boy.

  13. how very sad....

    wonder how a 2 year old pulled the trigger whiled aiming at himself?? for most handguns I know of that'd take a lot of strength. poor kiddo

  14. What a shame! I grieve for the folks who roll in not knowing what to expect and then having to deal with the family and their grief, too.
    When I think of how much sports stars get paid and how underpaid people are who really make a difference in the world, I could just gag. Not fair...

  15. I could hardly stand to read this. Unimaginable.

  16. Anonymous2:08 AM EDT

    Linda, as you know, my life has been touched by EMT and first responders very intimately.
    It IS so traumatic on these wonderful men and women.

    I will say a prayer for your friends tonight.

    May the Lord cover them with peace, transending all understanding, during this time of sadness and pain.

  17. Anonymous2:09 AM EDT

    ....the female EMT stayed with me and Angel until we went into the OR.
    She didn't have to do that.


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