We are used to hearing stories of firefighters performing thrilling feats of rescue such as carrying people out of burning buildings or even rescuing family pets from fires. Firefighters are often the first responders in many emergency situations. Other times, their duties are a little bit more low-key.
Sometimes, firefighters help cats who have climbed trees and forgotten how to get back down. In Sacramento, a compassionate fire fighter turned that compassionate nature toward rescuing a baby hummingbird.
The firefighter found the baby bird on a sidewalk. On stopping to examine the little blob of fur and feathers, he realized it was near death after being pushed from its nest. The firefighter picked up the little bird and spent the next two days feeding it sugar water to keep it alive.
Since the firefighter and his colleagues did not know whether the bird was male or female, they gave it the unisex name of Pat. After finishing his liquid diet, the baby hummingbird was switched to bugs.
The firefighter eventually gave the baby hummingbird up to the care of animal health professionals. At last report, the little bird was expected to thrive.
As this story proves, not all acts that change and save lives involve putting oneself in harm’s way. They don’t even require feats of strength or great bravery. But for a little hummingbird who would surely have perished without the firefighter’s intervention, this act of kindness and compassion was no less heroic.