Firefighters moonlighting as shelter logistics team

By Fred Childers - email | bio

SHREVEPORT, LA (KSLA) -   It's a long way from Shreveport, Louisiana, this is amateur video of the mountains of the northwest, and when they catch on fire, it takes a dedicated crew to put it out, "Most of us are wild-land fire fighters from the northwest," says Jesse Marino.  Some of the dedicated crew you see putting out fires in this video is the same crew who put out fires here of a different sort here, at the Old Sam's Club shelter in Shreveport. "Come down to provide logistical support, anything else they need, showers, and port a lets," says Marino.
     There are only about thirty evacuees left in the facility, but there's still a logistics team in place to provide those evacuees with things like the showers. Strangely enough fighting wildfires has prepared this team for life in a shelter. "We live in fire camps, or base camps a lot of times we stay in the woods for 7 to 14 days, and come down to fire camps and get a lot of food stuff like that," says Marino.
    And while the dangers are very apparent, providing shelter and comfort to those displaced by disaster brings it's own set of challenges.
    The shelter business as they know it, was born out of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita just a few years ago. "We have an opportunity to learn around every corner, I think they're learning a lot," says Marino. It's a  learning experience that promises to benefit everyone.