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Fire Chief Herb Johnson  1939 - 2011
THE FINAL INSPECTION

To my church have you been true? 

The policeman squared his shoulders and said.

"No, I guess I ain't because those of us who carry a badge can't always be a Saint." 

I've had to work most Sundays and at times my talk is rough, and sometimes I've been violent,

because the streets are awfully tough.

But I never took a penny that wasn't mine to keep... 

though I worked a lot of overtime when the bills got to steep.

And I never passed a cry for help though at times I shook with fear, and sometimes, God forgive me,

I've wept unmanly tears.  I know I don't deserve a place among the people here. 

They never wanted me around except to calm their fear.

If you've a place for me here, Lord, it needn't be so grand, I never expected or had too much,

but if you don't...I'll understand"

There was a silence all around the throne where the Saints had often trod.

As the policeman waited quietly for the judgment of his God. 

"Step forward now, policeman.

You've borne you burdens well.

Come walk a beat on Heaven's streets. 

You've done your time in Hell" 

-Author Unknown-

1944 - 2010
CHIEF HERB JOHNSON MFPD

His face was full and friendly his heart brave and true He was a worthy member
of our trusted fire crew

He loved to fight the fire he yearned to man the hose This was his heart's desire
this the life he chose

He trained to do his duty and he has passed his test He entered into manhood
the bravest and the best

Today we say goodbye to a fellow firefighter One we called our friend one that we held so dear

Please do not weep for him dear friend it was his time, his journey reached its end

Lay him down and when you leave remember he'll be at your sleeve

In every dark and choking hall he will be there as you slowly crawl

In every roof in driving snow, he will hold your coat and you will know.

In cellars hot with searing heat, at windows where a gate you meet.

In closets where young children hide, you know he will be at your side.

The house, from which Herb now responds, is over staffed with heroes gone.

Men and woman, who answered that one last bell, did there job and did it well.

As firemen we understand that death is a card dealt in our hand.
A card we hope we never play, but one we hold there anyway.

That card is something we ignore, as we crawl across a weakened floor.

For we know we are the only prayer for anyone who might be there.

So remember as you wipe the tears, the joy he knew throughout the years.

Author Ashley Frederick

A Fire Chief's Prayer 
________________________________________
I am called to many duties lord and now I've been called home. 

I've had to leave the ones I love To stand before your throne. 

I'll not complain, its not my way But there are some things I'll ask. 

And please , Lord, grant them to me For the loved ones I hold fast. 

I dare to ask because I know How you've blessed in the past. 

I've learned to trust in your grace, O Lord That's how I've come this far. 

So now, O God, I humbly pray Hear this Fire Chief's prayer. 

Bless my wife and family -- so often left alone, They knew where I was going and Trusted you to bring me home. 

Well, now I'm home and wait for them Keep them within the faith -- that one day, Someday, we'll be together in this place. 

And O dear God, bless my men I trained them as best I could. 

I tried to do your will with them and lead them as you would. 

I need to know your with them Lord Or else how can I stay And peacefully enjoy this place of endless day. 

This heaven where there is no night No fire to kill and burn I guess that's why its now my rest, my place, my turn. 

And Lord, be with my community And keep it safe as it can be For all its folks are special, and very dear to me. 

They are all my friends, and by your grace I served them as best I could. 

So hear this Fire Chief's prayer, O Lord And grant it please -- I already knew you would. 

Amen 

Firefighters Gloves
A Firefighters Gloves hold many things
From elderly arms to a kids broken swing
From the hands they shake and the backs they pat
To the tiny claw marks of another treed cat
At 2 am they are filled with chrome
From the DWI who was on her way home
And the equipment they use to roll back the dash
From the family of 6 she involved in the crash

The brush rakes in spring, wear the palms out
When the wind does a “90” to fill them with doubt
The thumb of the glove wipes the sweat from the brow
Of the face of a firefighter who mutters “What now?”

They hold inch and three quarters flowing one twenty five
So the ones going in, come back out alive
When the regulator goes; then there isn’t too much,
But the bypass valve the eagerly clutch

The rescue equipment, the ropes, the C-collars;
The lives they saved never measured in dollars
Are the obvious things firefighters gloves hold
Or, so that is what I’ve been always told

But there are other things Firefighters Gloves touch
Those are the things we all need so much

The hold back the rage on that 3 am call
They hold in the fear when you’re lost in a hall
They hold back the pity, agony, sorrow
They hold in the desire to “Do it tomorrow”

A gloves just a glove till it’s on firefighters
Who work all day long just to pull an all-nighter
And into the fray they charge without fear
At the sound of a “Help” they think that they hear

When firefighter’s hands go into the glove
It’s a firefighter who always fills it with love
Sometimes the sorrow is too much to bear
And it seeps the glove and burns deep “in there”

Off come the gloves when the call is done
And into the pocket until the next call
The hands become lonely and cold for a bit
And shake just thinking of it
And they sit there so red eyed with their gloves in their coats
The tears come so fast that the furniture floats
They’re not so brave now; their hands they cant hide
I guess it just means they are human inside

And though some are paid are others are not
The gloves feel the same when it’s cold or it’s hot
To someone you’re helping to just get along
When you fill them with love, you always feel strong

And so when I go on my final big ride
I hope to have my gloves by my side
To show to St. Peter at the heavenly gate
Cause as everyone knows, firefighters don’t wait.

Thank God


What Is A Friend?

 
A friend is someone you hold dear:
Someone who is always there, through thick and thin;
Someone who is only a phone call away.

A friend is someone you can always rely on:
Someone who is there to share your thoughts with;
Someone to listen, no matter the subject.

A friend is someone you can feel comfortable with:
Someone you can sit silently beside, without conversation;
Someone you do not need to fill the quiet moments with.

A friend is someone you can trust:
Someone who will guard your deepest secrets;
Someone who will never let you down.

A friend is someone who is not judgmental:
Someone who will gently offer advice and opinions,
Yet, someone who is not overbearing or critical.

A friend is someone who can keep you grounded:
Someone who can help you see through your obstacles;
Someone to shoulder you through life's trials.

A friend is someone who shares unconditionally:
Someone to laugh and to cry with;
Someone to lean on, through both the good and the bad.

A friend is someone you choose wisely,
For a friend is your own-mirrored image:
Someone to compliment your own self;
Someone who indicates who you are as a person.

A friend.... is what you were to me.