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Missoula first responders work Christmas to keep folks safe - KPAX.com | Continuous News | Missoula & Western Montana

Missoula first responders work Christmas to keep folks safe

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MISSOULA - While many of us spent Christmas Day lounging around the tree with family, staying bundled up in cozy blankets and going back for seconds of Christmas dinner -- some of our local heroes were patrolling the snowy roads keeping the community safe.

In a perfect world, there would be no car crashes, house fires, medical calls or major emergencies. But unfortunately the realities of life don’t stop, not even during the holidays.

“Just because it’s Christmas doesn’t mean anything changes… a drop of the hat something major can happen," Missoula County Sheriff's Deputy Kelan Larson said. "That’s kind of the exciting part of the job, right? You never know what’s going to happen. It kind of keeps you on your toes."

The icy roads and snowy weather kept Larson busy this Christmas morning. But despite working a 12-hour-shift on a major holiday, Larson says the support from the community is inspiring.

“We get a lot of thank-you cards, gift baskets…even just the casual little wave every now and then just really helps us," Larson said. "This career can be stressful and that little bit of support helps out a lot." 

While keeping the community safe, Larson did get a few minutes to go home and watch his kid open up presents.

"This career doesn’t lend itself to family time. It’s just the manor of the job and what you need to do," Larson said. "Things change so fast you could be called out one second and be gone all day. I feel lucky to be part of a department that values family time."

As the majority of us are going about the hustle and bustle of the hectic holiday season, take a moment to think of the ones in uniform away from their families as they protect ours.

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