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> Monday, September 20th, 2010 > News > Paramedic students honour 9/11
Paramedic students honour 9/11
Click here to read more Interrobang articles written by Erika Faust
Published: Monday, September 20th, 2010
Early in the morning on Saturday, September 11, as the sun rose and the city dozed, Fanshawe's paramedic students were busy delivering breakfast to Emergency Medical Service workers across London and Elgin County.
This annual tradition began in 2002, the year after the September 11 attacks that took so many emergency service workers' lives. "It gave the community an idea of how emergency services work together," Randy Fortner, a second- year paramedic student described the attacks. "While people were running out, they were running in."
The delivery of breakfast to local emergency workers is the students' way of showing appreciation to those who work to save lives every day.
"It originally it started with lunch in 2002," said Sherry Jacklin, coordinator of the paramedic program. "Last year we switched it over to breakfast. That way, we can hit every medic that's leaving duty and every medic that's coming on duty. We can also hit the central ambulance communication centre."
The students' response to this year's breakfast delivery was overwhelming. "Too many people volunteered, so our names got picked out of a hat," said Zach Chevrie- Hudson, a first-year paramedic student. He and over 40 other volunteers packed the breakfasts into brown paper bags the night before.
The breakfast also shows the appreciation Fanshawe's paramedic program has for London's Emergency Service workers. They volunteer their time to come to classrooms to teach, help students prepare for exams and allow students to ride along with them in ambulances a few times per semester.
Paramedic class rep Cassandra Dumitru helped organize the event, which fed over 100 workers and managers. "It was stressful – there was a lot of planning to do," she said. The hard work was worth it. "I think it's nice to thank them once in a while ... they don't get thanked enough."
Food for the breakfasts was donated from the Oasis and Starbucks. ValuMart donated a gift card. According to Dumitru, most of the funds were raised during the summer, with bake sales, barbeques and car washes.
Lindy Neilson, a primary care paramedic, was pleased to receive a breakfast. "I came out of Fanshawe myself, so the interaction is great. It gets them involved with us ... (It's) a good relationship we have with them."