MUSGRAVETOWN, N.L. — Earlier this month, Anthony Paddon Elementary Kindergartener Alex Cull had, as described by his mom Lisa, “a major phobia” of his house catching fire. Now, thanks to the kind-hearted local Fire Chief Gerald Thomas, Alex is the proud new Junior Firefighter for the Mugravetown Volunteer Fire Department.
Lisa told The Packet that Alex developed his fire of fire after fire prevention week at his school.
She says what he learned left a profound effect on him, because he obsessively laid out evacuation plans for his own, and his nan’s home, and kept a flashlight and whistle by his bed.
He even cried himself to sleep because of his fear that something would happen to his home.
“It’s always on his mind,” says Lisa. “No matter how many of us try to reassure him that everything’s fine and our house is safe, he always replied, ‘But how do you know that?’ or ‘If our house was made of bricks it wouldn’t burn!’”
Alex says he didn’t want anything bad to happen to his family — his mom, dad, sister Abby, dog Bentley and cats Max and Minnie.
“It was every single night,” said Lisa.
Lisa says her and Alex’s dad finally decided to ask the local Fire Chief Gerald Thomas to talk to Alex.
When Thomas tried to tell Alex his house was safe, Alex replied that Thomas’ was safe because he was a firefighter and was there in case something happened.
This gave Thomas the idea to make Alex a Junior Firefighter. He came to their house, in uniform, with a special embroidered t-shirt with his name, a hat, some books and a certificate from Fire and Emergency Services for Alex.
Lisa says this helped Alex tremendously in conquering his fear
“I think (Thomas) deserves all the recognition possible for his selfless act of kindness. We are forever grateful,” she said.
“He didn’t have to do that.”
Alex says he’s no longer scared.
And he beams with pride when he says what he wants to be when he grows up.
“A fireman!” smiles Alex. “Like Gerald.”