With all the negative publicity that the D.C. fire department has received of late [“Report: Ambulance fires likely accidental,” Metro, Aug. 18], I thought I would share a story.

Seventeen years ago, when I was a paramedic with Engine 16 of the D.C. Fire and EMS Department, I saved the life of a good man from Shelbyville, Ky., who had gone into cardiac arrest. His name was Laurel True. Each year in December on the date I saved his life, he would call to thank me for giving him one more year to see his children and grandchildren and to enjoy life. I began to look forward to those calls each year. He would tell me about his sons and daughters, his work and his health. He would thank me again for his “extra time.” He even came to visit me once when I was drag-racing in Clay City, Ky.

On Aug. 18, his wife called to tell me he died and to thank me for the years I gave him and their family. I should be thanking them. He will be missed. Goodbye, old friend.

John Farr, Bowie