Published on April 20, 2020
AHMEDABAD: Gautam Patel, a fireman with Gandhinagar Fire and Emergency Services (GFES), was on duty in the state capital – disinfecting parts of the city – on Saturday when he got news that his 77-year-old mother was critical.
“I rushed home and could talk to her for a few minutes from a safe distance before she breathed her last. She had trouble in breathing for past few days due to age-related complications and I was keeping an eye on her health. There’s only one solace that I could see her before her demise,” recounts Patel.
“We took the body to our native Koba and cremated her. As the final rites were over, I informed my supervisor that I was ready to join again.”
Mahesh Mod, fire officer, GFES, said that Patel could have taken leave of a day on account of his mother’s death.
“But he decided to join as soon as possible. Disinfection of the state capital is taking place daily and majority of our staff is associated with the work including Patel. It’s our way to ensure that the COVID-19 spread could be contained,” he said.
CM Vijay Rupani also praised Patel’s dedication on his social media page on Sunday evening.
“I operate the disinfectant vehicle and also keep track of the medicines received and dispatched for the disinfection. These are difficult times and service of all is needed to ensure that we defeat COVID-19. I terribly miss my mother and am mourning her death but I am focused on work at hand as I see my equally determined fellow firemen,” said Patel.