It is with deep sorrow that I write this. Today we lost one of our own, Emergency Medical Technician and IAFF Member Brian LeMaster. Brian was a caring fiancé, loving father, and inspiring brother who never hesitated to help anyone in need — on the clock or not.

Brian dedicated the past fifteen years serving the citizens of Arizona in their deepest time of need with skill, knowledge, and compassion — most recently in Apache Junction on AP265-B Shift.

Today, the stress of EMS, and of life, took one of our own who saw no other way out than to take his own life after ending his shift early this morning. As you all know, our jobs as emergency medical professionals is not an easy one. It’s toll on our bodies and minds is no gentle matter. PTSD and depression are real issues, work issues. If you or anyone you encounter needs help — even if it is just somebody to talk to — please do not hesitate to call EAP, call a friend, another officer, or myself.

The phone number for EAP is 1-800-925-5327. In addition, CISD teams are being mobilized to support our members throughout the valley. If you would like more information on CISD and peer-support counseling, please contact Kari Spannerella (Southern Arizona CISD) at 520-429-2796.

Starting tomorrow at 0800, the CISD team will be available all day at the Training Building located at 222 E Main Street, Mesa, Arizona 85201.  Please do not hesitate to call or text Kari at 520-429-2796 for CISD information.

Kevin Burkhart