Tallahassee Firefighters Rush to Save One of their Own
November 21, 2013
Tallahassee firefighters respond to nearly 12,000 medical emergencies each year
throughout our community. Our emergency medical technicians and paramedics are well
trained and prepared for any type of emergency involving any type of patient. Last week,
the Tallahassee Fire Department was put to the test both emotionally and professionally
as it would have to rush to save one of its own firefighters.
At around 2:00 p.m. on Thursday, November 14, 2013, Firefighter Steve Box was
participating in a firefighter physical fitness evolution at the TFD training grounds,
located at 2964 Municipal Way. FF Box was dressed in a firefighter coat, helmet and air
pack as he made his way through the course. As FF Box was making his way up the fivestory
training tower he suddenly became unconscious. Firefighters who were escorting
FF Box through the evolution, rushed to his aid and quickly determined that he was in
cardiac arrest and was not breathing. Firefighters quickly moved FF Box inside the
training tower and began CPR. More than seven firefighter/paramedics were at the scene
and began administering advanced life support and delivering several shocks with a
defibrillator. Leon County EMS arrived at the scene and FF Box was loaded for transport
to Tallahassee Memorial Hospital with firefighters riding along with the ambulance
crews to assist. FF Box did become responsive after several shocks in the ambulance and
was opening his eyes as the unit arrived at TMH.
Once at TMH, FF Box was rushed to the care of doctors and medical staff where he was
quickly taken to surgery for further treatment. It was determined that FF Box suffered a
heart attack due to arterial blockage resulting in him going into cardiac arrest. Within just
several hours of his surgery, FF Box was able to receive visitors to his hospital room.
Those visitors were Tallahassee firefighters, some of whom were the same ones who
played a role in saving his life. FF Box and his family were able to speak with them and
share their tremendous gratitude for the compassion and professionalism shown that day.
In addition to the outstanding patient care provided by TMH, the Tallahassee Fire Department was simply amazed at the level of support, compassion and humanity that was demonstrated by everyone around the incident. "I truly wish I had the opportunity to gather everyone's name who provided FF Box, his family and our department with support so that I could thank them personally," said Interim Fire Chief Wes Roberts. "From the bottom of my heart, I want everyone to know how much we appreciate and admire the support from our professional colleagues and the Tallahassee community." If it wasn't for the quick action and skill of FF Box's fellow coworkers that afternoon, the outcome may have been altogether different.
Steve Box is currently resting at his home and is expected to make a full recovery. Steve is an eight-year veteran of the Tallahassee Fire Department and currently serves in the rank of Fire Engineer. Steve Box is also a certified Florida Paramedic.
Lt. Mike Bellamy, Public Information Officer, 606-6625