Blazing a Career Path

Senior Takes Position on Groom Volunteer Fire Department

Blazing+a+Career+Path

Leslie Germany

Senior Mason Miller picks up a hose on the back of one of the fire trucks at Groom Fire Department. Miller’s dream of becoming a fire fighter is something he’s wanted for quite some time. “In May, when I graduate, I plan to do my Emergency Medical Technician-Basic Clinicals, finish my EMT class and gain my EMT-Basic certification,” Miller said. “After that, I plan to attend the Amarillo Fire Academy.”

By Leslie Germany, Groom High School

Between football, basketball, one act play and student council, senior Mason Miller barely has time to do his homework, yet, he’s added fuel to his own fire. Actually, he’s putting them out. Fires, that is. Miller is the newest member of the Groom Volunteer Fire Department.

“When I was younger I wanted to be in the military,” Miller said. “But, as I grew older, I decided that I could help the people in the town that I love by becoming a firefighter.”

Miller asked the head of the Groom Volunteer Fire Department, Gary Don Babcock, if it was possible to get a junior fire department in Groom.

“He told me that we could probably get something going,” Miller said.

Miller’s dream of entering this specialized career field is something he’s considered for quite some time.

“I’ve wanted to become a firefighter for about six years,” he said.

Babcock and his family called different places and to get their rules and regulations for establishing a junior division. Then, they created the Groom Junior Fire Department.

“As soon as they were finished, we got together and went over all the rules,” Miller said. “Then my parents and I filled out the needed paperwork and turned it in.”

The department takes into consideration the academic and leadership qualities of the applicant when he or she applies for a junior firefighter position.

“This program will be a learning process for both the department and Mason,” Babcock said. “We are excited to have Mason join us.”

Miller has already responded to his first fire.

“Since I have been a part of the department, we have responded to a small grass fire on Interstate 40,” Miller said, “and safely put it out.”

Between school, basketball, FFA and several other extracurricular activities, it’s difficult for Mason to help on a lot of fires.

“All the good fires happen when I’m stuck up here (at school),” Miller shouted in the middle of OAP practice on Monday, Jan. 16.

Mason plans to continue working toward his dreams after graduation.

“In May, when I graduate, I plan to do my Emergency Medical Technician-Basic Clinicals, finish my EMT class and gain my EMT-Basic certification,” Miller said. “After that, I plan to attend the Amarillo Fire Academy.”

Based on Miller making it to state as a team member in football and an individual as an OAP honor crew member, Miller’s family has come to expect high levels of achievement from him.

“He is one of the hardest working kids I know,” mother Roni Michelle Miller said.

Now that he is about done with high school, Miller wants to give advice to younger students who might want to follow in his footsteps one day.

“The only advice I have to say is this: Set high goals, and work as hard as you can to meet those goals,” he said. “And you will make it a long way in life.”

Miller’s family said they are proud of all his accomplishments.

“The Groom Junior Fire Department is an awesome program, and Mason is very excited to do it,” his mom added.

Miller said he is grateful for the Groom community and for this opportunity.

“I would like to thank Gary Don Babcock and the rest of the Groom Volunteer Fire Department for helping me become part of the department,” Miller said.

Read the original story here.