Jason was the bravest fire-fighter I had ever worked with. He used to say that no matter how rich you are, no matter how strong you are, if you do not risk your life for others, you are not a man.
Once, we were supposed to attend day-shift but our boss called Jason and myself and told us to work the night-shift instead. As we went in at seven o’clock in the evening, we made a cup of coffee and started checking the fire trucks.
At around ten o’clock, the siren rang and we were informed that our assistance was required as there was a burning house. Six trucks, including two ladder trucks, emerged from the garages and we sped up the highway of North Carolina as fast as we could.
As we arrived, a young man came rushing at us, panic-stricken, with tears in his eyes, telling us that his girlfriend was trapped in the flames.
Quickly Jason with the courage of a lion, fetched his breathing apparatus and an axe an in he went in the hungry flames of the devastating fire. We followed him in and as we were going up the stairs, he ordered us to go out again because everything was brittle and the structure of the house could no longer support four people.
We went out again while he kept advancing in the towering flames. We kept radio contact with him and when he heard the crying and shouting of twenty-year old Christa, he quickly told us that he had found the girl.
Half an hour later, Jason emerged from a door with the girl walking beside him and when the girl ran to her boyfriend he fell to the ground. We rushed to see what had happened but he was dead.
One of my friends, Jack, looked at the lung monitor. (This is a digital watch which measures the concentration of carbon dioxide against that of oxygen in the lungs). The ratio was scary. He had eighty-five percent carbon dioxide and fifteen per-cent oxygen in his lungs.