Full-time firefighters needed

Dear Mike:
It has been brought to my attention that Fort Frances town council is discussing a reduction to the staff of our full-time firefighters. I personally find this very disturbing.
I have been a volunteer firefighter for nearly 10 years. During that time, I have been in very hazardous situations with each and every one of the full-time firefighters we have.
At these times, it is my job to follow their lead.
For my own safety, I have to rely on their training, experience, and knowledge to get me through these situations safely. Whereas I have other things on my mind, as well as firefighting, such as my own full-time job, the main concern for these firefighters is the welfare of our residents’ lives and property.
I am also a father of two children, a homeowner, and a shift-worker. When I go to work, I know my family is safe—day or night—because a dedicated, well-trained, and fully-staffed fire department is ready, willing, and able to do whatever it takes to protect my family if the need should arise.
I ask council and the residents of Fort Frances: Without a full-time fire department of hard-working and dedicated individuals, just how well will you sleep at night?
Ray Herbert
Fort Frances, Ont.
A volunteer firefighter
and concerned citizen