Lt. Ronald Sanchez, Driver Eleno Candelaria, FF Jerrel Byrant, FF Victor Teupell, and QI Captain Tim Marshall are all apart of the Engine 19 crew for the Albuquerque Fire Department.
On Saturday, March 20, a late winter snowstorm blew through the Albuquerque Metro area. Early that morning, a family from El Paso was driving on I-40 near the Route 66 Casino. The severe weather caused the family's truck to crash and rollover. A mother and her seven year old son were uninjured, but since they were from El Paso they had nowhere to go for safe shelter. Engine 14 initially took the call, but had to clear the scene to respond to other traffic events on I-40. Engine 19 then took over and showed true hospitality. The woman made arrangements with family members in El Paso to pick her and her son up. In the meantime, the Engine 19 crew gave the mother and her son a ride in the fire truck, gave her son an AFD T-shirt and kept her son entertained throughout the day. The woman and her son ate at the fire station with the fire fighters and the seven year old was even made an honorary fire fighter for the day.
During this difficult time for this woman, the Engine 19 crew was able to calm her down, provide shelter, and turn what started out as a terrible day into something positive.
The woman from El Paso wrote an email to Engine 19. The following is an excerpt:
"I cannot put into words how I feel about you and the men of Fire Station 19. I owe you all so much for helping my son and I out when we really needed it. You all went above and beyond what was asked to make a bad situation much easier to handle, you gave us a place to stay until our ride came and most importantly you gave us the support we needed to cope with the accident."