The Firefighter's Boots
By: Delores Lekowski

The last couple of weeks we have been shown what our firefighters are all about.

As I drove through the intersections where they were holding out their
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boots to collect money for everyone in New York, my love and respect deepended for them. As I put my money in each boot that I came to, I couldn't help but think about how many times those boots had faced danger when they were on that fire fighter's feet. How many boots their owners have not worn because they were hurt or killed in the line of duty. It doesn't matter what fires they were fighting; what matters is that we lost them. Their boots will never be used to protect their feet again.

I have long thought that our firefighters were the silent heroes of our country. While they were putting their lives on the line for us, and protecting us, what were we doing to protect them? Were we vocal enough about consumer products that are a possible fire threat? Did we ignore the fact that highly flammable products are manufactured and sold every day, and contribute to fires that put our firefighters' lives in danger? How many of our firefighters will never wear their boots again because of these fires?

Our fire fighters didn't just become heroes; they have always been that. They are fearless in the face of danger, in the face of fire. They have always done so, they continue to do so, and they will do this always with compassion. A compassion and love for their broghers and sisters that fight these fires, beside

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them and with them. A compassion and love for the people that they are searching for in rubble that the fire created.

It is now time for all of us to do our part to protect the same people that have always protected us. We need to start protesting the manufactures of the unsafe products. We need to insist that the CEO's of these companies become more responsible in creating fire-safe products. We do this by writing letters, being more vocal, and not buying these products. We need to do our part in keeping our firefighters safe.

We do not want a firefighter's boots to be forever empty.

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