Every day, people who serve as police, fire and air rescue personnel put their lives on the line for the rest of society. Every day, there are moments that those service men and women miss in their children’s lives.
On Saturday, Dec. 3, Santa and Mrs. Claus took a few hours out of their day to thank those men and women and celebrate the holiday season with a pancake breakfast at Fire Station 3 in Mesquite, arriving with help from Mercy Air’s helicopter.
“We want the families to know how much we appreciate their sacrifices and their commitment to our safety,” Santa told the MLN. “Despite our busyness at this time of year, it is worth taking a couple of hours to be with them!”
Thanks to AprilLynn LeBaron, a Firefighter and Paramedic with Mesquite Fire Rescue, children were able to enjoy ornament crafts, a filling breakfast, and presents and photos with Santa and Mrs. Claus. As the head of the Mesquite Firefighters Association, she makes it a priority for special events like this to focus on family time whether it’s personal or professional family.
“This is the fourth year we’ve done this. We are all family and this gives everyone a chance with their busy schedules to get together.”
It began with just Mesquite Fire Rescue families, but has grown to include the Mesquite Police Department and Mercy Air families as well.
After a hearty breakfast organized by LeBaron and prepared by members of the Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) volunteers, children were called up for a gift from Santa. One by one they sat on his lap and posed for family photos, most of them with a smile on their face.
The Claus’ exit was amended once again this year, as crews with Mercy Air were called out for a medical emergency, so Deputy Chief Rick Resnick gave them a lift to the Mesquite Airport so that they could get back home and to work since there are just two short weeks left until Christmas.