CSRA firemen give unforgettable experience to boy battling cystic fibrosis


Aiken County, SC (WJBF) – Firefighters are no strangers to answering a call for service, but some in Aiken County got dispatched to help fulfill a grandfather’s wish for a special little boy.

“He’s a wonderful grandson,” said Scott Gurley, who once served as a fire chief, himself. Eight-year-old Stewart spent much of his life in different scenery — inside hospitals battling Cystic Fibrosis. “It’s sad. That’s my grandbaby.”

It’s that love that prompted Gurley to ask local firemen to offer their time to Stewart, but got way more than expected. “When they came by the house and picked up the grandboys in the fire truck. That was awesome.”

Several local firemen decided to give Stewart a day he’d never forget. “We were able to get quite a few firemen together, and their kids,” said Captain Brandon Padilla, with the Midland Valley Fire Department.

For Captain Harold Cain, with the Langley Fire Department, it was a personal gesture. “It’s been a long road and I know what they’re going through,” he said.

Captain Cain’s fellow firemen have helped fund his own son’s treatments. “We got a bunch of fire departments together and they’d donate money. We had to go to St. Louis, we had to fly, and I wouldn’t be able to do that without the fire department.”

Captain Cain’s son, Cody, also knows the meaning of selflessness — giving a fireman’s hat to Stewart after the impromptu softball game.

This is one day at the park Stewart won’t soon forget

“If we can make that kids day for one time, we’ve done a great job,” said Padilla.

Stewart was diagnosed with cystic fibrosis as an infant, but his family says he’s doing much better. And, they’re thankful for those firemen in the Aiken County area.

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