A while back, I read a letter to the editor thanking all the people who fought the fire when the Tony Apodaca residence burned in the Gascon Valley. I wanted to echo that thanks. As bad as it was, I know it could have been a lot worse if the high winds had carried that fire down the valley.
The outpouring of support and assistance demonstrates all too well how the Rociada, Gascon and Pendaries community bands together to do the right thing. It could have been any one of us up here. I am sure Tony knows and feels the love of the many people beyond our community as well who rallied to her in her time of need.
I’ve heard good things about the contribution my friend, Jerry Gomez, played in controlling that fire. Though he is not presently a volunteer firefighter, he stepped up to the task and helped keep the fire from spreading to other houses and outbuildings. There were many others. I’d list them by name if I knew who they all were.
In that recent letter to the editor, there was one particular person left out of being thanked for fighting that fire, the letter’s writer, Sapello-Rociada Volunteer Fire Department chief Kayt Peck. I was very saddened to here of her recent resignation from the fire department. I feel those of us in the area lost a valuable and caring public servant. Kayt, thanks for all you did and for all you tried to do. I appreciate it, and I’m willing to bet there are many more who feel the same way.
Though I know nothing of the reasons behind Ms. Peck stepping down, I know her to be a highly principled and ethical person with no axe to grind. I am puzzled by this. Having a U.S. Navy firefighting background is a most valuable asset to have available to the Rociada-Sapello Volunteer Firefighter group.
Having been rescued myself from a burning aircraft on a Navy base runway several years ago, those folks know their stuff. Myself and 14 of my fellow crewmembers en route to Vietnam owe our lives to skilled and selfless firefighters like Ms. Peck.
Whatever prompted her departure from that valuable safety and community service group, I hope they all rise above it and do the right thing. Put differences aside and get her back on the job.