My name is Dana Deatherage and I was an EMT for 20 Years.
I got hurt at work in 2009 and was off work for a year. The service I worked for let me go because I could no longer do the job. In 2010 I was with my brother at a service station when we heard and felt an explosion. As someone in EMS your first reaction is to go see if you can help. When I went out side I told my brother to call 911 and where to send them.
When I got on scene I found a building that had been completely destroyed and a female lying on the ground with critical injuries. There was also a person trying to get a gentleman out from beneath a wall that had collapsed on him. I went to help pull him out. Black powder was still exploding and ammunition was going off while we were trying to get him out from under the wall. The patient kept sliding out of my hands and I kept thinking “why is he sliding? He isn’t that big”. He kept telling me he was burning and once we got him free I looked down and the skin from his arms was all over my hands.
After ems and fire got on scene I gave them my report and they took over. I was sitting on a front porch trying to let my adrenalin to come down when the sheriff asked me if I was ok. I said yeah and left to go back to the store where my brother was. When I got back to the store my brother asked me the same thing. I said “yes, why does everyone keep asking me that?”. He said “Dana you are covered in blood!”.
After this event everything has changed. All my past calls have come back to haunt me. The patient I helped rescue died. He had 90% burns over his body. It is 2016 and I still see him from time to time with my other calls. Thanks for listening.
– Story written by Dana, 50 year old EMT. 20 years in EMS.