Arlington Fire Crew Helps Fellow Firefighters in Mexico

Susy Solis
July 03, 2020 - 11:03 am

    DALLAS (KRLD) - Deputy Chief Pedro Arevalo and a few of his firefighter friends from the Arlington Fire department went to Jalisco, Mexico on vacation. While there they decided to visit some fire stations and they were shocked at what they saw. 

    "We started talking to these guys and we saw their equipment. It was torn, ripped. They had a lot of volunteers but they all had to share 2 or 3 sets of bunker gear," Arevalo said. "We thought, 'We have to help these people.' They do so much with so little." 

    When they returned to the states, Pedro gathered what he could to send back. 

    "It was a small amount of equipment, a few bunker sets and helmets and a couple of pieces of equipment," Arevalo said. 

    The volunteer firefighters in Mexico were so grateful. Arevelo said he knew they had to do more. When they came back to the states after their second trip, Arevalo asked his command staff if he could take this on as a personal project and begin to gather equipment that is out of service to send to the volunteer crews in Mexico. Everyone was on board and he immediately began getting calls from other cities, looking to donate equipment and other gear. They ended gathering a large amount of equipment. 

    The volunteer crew from Mexico drove 18 hours to pick up the gear that Arevalo had gathered for them. A week later, Arevalo and another crew drove down to Mexico to deliver more equipment. 

    "Anything fire-related, we took," Arevalo said. They were able to donate to six towns in Jalisco."

    As firefighters, they are used to helping people but in this case, it hits close to home. 

    "It's a very humbling experience. You see how much these guys do with so little and they are so grateful and have the best attitudes," Arevalo said. "Every time we come back from one of our trips down there, my guys say, 'Thank you for letting us go down there to help.' They have big hearts."

    We're proud to call the Arlington Fire Department this week's KRLD Difference Makers. 

    The crew does this out of the goodness of their hearts, spending their own money on airfare and hotels and using their own vacation time to help. 

    "We plan to do this annually," Arevalo said. "We're also going to be doing training classes for them on fire safety and more."

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