BOBSY (chicken soup for soul) by Jack Canfield & Mark Victor Hansen
The 26-year-old mother stared down at her son who was dying of terminal leukemia. Although her heart was filled with sadness, she also had a strong feeling of determination. Like any loving parent, she wanted her son to grow up and fulfill all his dreams. Now that was no longer possible. The leukemia would see to that. But she still wanted her sons dreams to come true.
She took her son’s hand and asked, “Bobsy, did you ever think about what you wanted to be when you grew up? Did you ever dream and wish about what you wanted to do with your life?”
“Mommy, I always wanted to be a fire man when I grew up.”Mom smiled back and said, let’s see if we can make your wish come true.” Later that day she went to her local fire department in Phoenix, Arizona where she met fireman Bob, who had a heart as big as Phoenix. She explained her son’s final wish and asked if it may be possible to give her six-year-old son a ride around the block on a fire engine.
Fireman Bob said, Look we can do better than that. If you will have your son ready at seven o’clock Wednesday morning, we will make him an honorary fireman for the whole day. He can come down to the fire station, eat with us, go out on all the fire calls, the whole nine yards! And, if you will give us his sizes, we will get a real fire uniform made for him, with a real fire hat_ not a toy one _ with the emblem of the Phoenix Fire Department on it, a yellow slicker like we wear and rubber boots. They are all manufactured here in Phoenix, so we can get them fast.
Three days later, Fireman Bob picked up Bobsy, dressed him in his fireman uniform and escorted him from his hospital bed to the waiting hook and ladder truck. Bobsy got to sit up on the back of the truck and helped steer it back to the fire station. He was in heaven.
There were three fire calls in Phoenix that day and Bobsy got to go out on all three calls. He rode in the different fire engines, the paramedic’s van, and even the fire chief’s car. He was also video taped for the local news program.
Having his dream come true with all the love and attention that was lavished upon him, so deeply touched Bobsy that he lived three months longer than any doctor thought possible.
One night all of his vital signs began to drop dramatically and the head nurse who believed in the hospice concept that no one should die alone began to call the family members to the hospital. Then she remembered the day Bobsy had spent as a fireman, so she called the fire chief and asked if it could be possible to send a fireman in uniform to the hospital to be with Bobsy as he made his transition. The chief replied, “We can do better than that. We will be there in five minutes. Will you please do me a favor? When you hear the sirens screaming and see the lights flashing, will you announce over the PA system that there is not a fire? It’s just the fire department coming to see one of it’s finest member one more time. And will you open the window to his room? Thanks.”
About five minutes later a hook and ladder truck arrived at the hospital, extended its ladder up to third floor open widow and 14 firemen climbed up the ladder into Bobsy’s room. With his mother’s permission, they hugged him, held him, and told him how much they loved him.
With his dying breath, Bobsy looked up at the fire chief and said, Chief, am I really a fireman now?”“Bobsy, you are.” The chief said. With those words, Bobsy smiled and closed his eyes for the last time.