Family members worry as CO firefighters help with hurricanes

Family members are forced to wait as their relatives are sent to help with Harvey AND Irma.

There have been many Colorado firefighters sent to other states to help with wildfires and even hurricane relief.

We see and hear their stories, but there are also the stories from the families having to see their spouse or parent leave for an extended amount of time, some even being deployed back to back.

For Whitney Wilmes and her daughter Murphie, playing with toys is pretty normal, but for the last 13 days, something’s been a little off.

Murphie’s father, Scott Wilmes, got deployed to help Hurricane Harvey relief efforts on August 26, and he is still gone.

“He was actually en route on Tuesday to come home and then I got a call about 9:30 that night that they were told to wait and that they had to turn around and go to Irma,” said Wilmes.

Scott’s been a Westminster firefighter for 13 years and is part of the Colorado Task Force One, an urban search and rescue team under the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

He’s seen disaster’s many other times.

“The Boulder Lions area flood and then there were a few fires prior to that,” Wilmes said.

She said these recent deployments are different.

“The hardest was telling our daughter that daddy was coming home because she kind of had a hard time with it and then him not, that was the hardest so far," said Wilmes.

Scott’s family is proud of him.

“He keeps reminding me when I get sad or down that they are doing good work,” Wilmes said.

They know while he’s being positive, the situation is hard for him too.

“He does miss her, it’s hard for him to be gone that long,” added Wilmes.

So as Murphie plays on her toy phone and calls her dad - even though it's pretend - it makes them feel like normal isn’t too far away.

Whitney is not sure how long her husband will be gone but she hopes he is back Intime for their anniversary which at the end of the month.

© 2017 KUSA-TV


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