How Great Thou Part

One day when I was first married I heard a knock at the door. I made my way through our townhouse and pulled at the front door. I was living in Baltimore at the time. A little over an hour from where I grew up in the metropolitan D.C. area.

There on the front stoop, much to my surprise, stood my brother.

“I heard you were having a tough time,” he said.

“How did you know?” I asked.

“The girls told me,” he said.

I remember the exchange of those words vividly. However, I honestly don’t remember what it was that brought him there that day. I think it might have been shortly after we lost both of our parents and I was struggling through that pain. My sisters had obviously shared something with him and he showed up.

This is my brother. He’s been showing up my whole life. He’s been showing up for all of us girls in our family.

In fact, he’s been showing up for just about anyone who needs him. I would say it is the fireman in him only I am not sure what precedes what. Is it that part of him that made him choose the path of selfless firefighter? Or is it the firefighter that makes an already selfless person even more selfless? I think it is the former. My brother has always lived a ‘present’ life. He has always been caring and even more importantly he has always treated us girls and our mother with a reverent type of love.

I was chatting with a friend once about her divorce. When asked about her husband she said he was the greatest disappointment of her life. I understood her choice of words more than I wished to. My dad had actually been the greatest disappointment of my life and now I had married someone who had been the second, greatest disappointment of my life.

Only there’s been one guy in my life who has never been a disappointment.
One guy who has always showed up.
One guy who never left me.
One guy who is the kind of man that every man should be.

He’s a firefighter who battles every man’s raging blazes. A brother who battles our emotional fires. Be it the loud alarm of a firehouse or the silent alarm of a sister – he answers the call.

He shows up.
He rescues us.

To the world and to strangers, he is a hero. To us girls, he is our ‘superhero.’

BillyFD 1
My handsome brother when he first became a firefighter

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