The tragic fire in Dryden Township in which four family members perished an incredibly sad incident that will leave a mark on the community, those who responded to the scene or knew the victims. Although it’s been just over a week since the tragedy, there’s an added sense of sadness in not yet knowing what might have happened.

We are reminded of the peril first responders put themselves in when responding to these incidents plus the mental anguish they also endure when death or serious injury is also involved. In the case of the fire, firefighters from multiple departments fought valiantly to extinguish the flames of what was an intense fire only to later learn that no one in the home was able to escape.

This recent incident likely stirred up memories of another, not too distant fatal fire. In February 2019, four children died in a house fire in Imlay City. Like the one in Dryden, the blaze was intense and firefighters and other first responders fought hard to rescue the youngsters. It was a traumatic incident that forever changed many of those on scene that day.

We are grateful for their service and hope they know we appreciate their willingness to respond to physically dangerous and mentally and emotionally challenging situations when the call for help goes out.

It’s evidence again that first responders—both those who serve in volunteer capacities and the others who make it their career—put a lot on the line to serve the community. They are true hometown heroes.