Eric Braun

Story Vault

By Eric Braun

On the radio, we are the voice of reason, even when you think we’re not.

Like you, we don’t always agree with our orders, but we follow them.

Above all, we care; your safety is our primary concern.

We know more about your work ethic, habits, and quirks than you know about yourself.

We know your voice and tone by heart and what each means, and adapt accordingly.

We know when you’re stressed, and we do our best to give you the space you need after a bad call.

We care, too; we take the call, we hear what you’re up against, and we resist the urge to ask you how it turned out.

Sometimes, we just don’t want to know and pretend it must have been a good ending.

We know what you’re saying out of frustration inside the rig when there’s that momentary pause before answering us.

It’s OK, we do the same thing. At the end of the day, we are all still friends—it goes with the territory.

We really do feel bad giving you a job at 6:40 a.m.; we know you have loved ones and lives, too.

When we take 9-1-1 calls, we know within 30 seconds which strategic approach to take to extract what we need.

We know what tone to use, how to talk to you, and how to take control of the call.

Even when you are abusive, we will not break; we remain professional and treat you with respect.

We know more about you in a five-minute conversation than your family does, but not to worry, we don’t judge, and we don’t tell.

We read between the lines; it’s not only what you say but how you say it, and we adapt without hesitation.

We do this because we really do care and want to help you; it’s not a job, it’s our code and vocation.

You will remember us and how we treated and helped you—three hours later when you do; we have taken 20 more calls since then.

For us, it’s not just another call; it’s our chance to make a difference in your life, and in doing so it makes a difference in ours.

We take control, remain professional, stay calm, and get you through it until help arrives.

And yes, we take our headsets off and walk around the parking lot a few times to clear our minds, walk off pressure and tension, and return to take the next cry for help.

Some of you may dislike us, some will respect us, and some don’t care one way or another. It’s OK; we will still be here tomorrow and give 100 percent, because it’s who we are …