Salute the Badge: MHK Firefighter keeps his cool during Hale Library fire

By Regan Porter
WIBW – June 26, 2018

A little over one month ago First Responders swarmed Hale Library on Kansas State University’s campus after a fire broke out.

Manhattan Firefighter Lawilson Horne kept his cool for more than 20 hours on scene while the situation heated up.

“It’s our job,” Horne said as a matter of fact.

When you ask Lawilson Horne why he chose to be a firefighter the answer is simple, “because I just like dealing with people!”

Although firefighter Horne may be a little bias. He thinks this occupation one of the best forms of public service.

“You’re there in all kinds of emergencies,” Horne said, “You’re there to help sick people and you’re there to help put out fires.”

One of the biggest fires Horne’s ever worked was here at Hale Library, but that’s when his determination shined through. He tirelessly battled the blaze for more than 20 hours with only a four hour break.

Horne said, “I was on scene at that fire from start to finish.”

He didn’t do it alone — more than 70 other First Responders were there.

“We did a ton,” Horne exclaimed,

Although a reported one-point-five million books were damaged by smoke and water. Battalion Chief Linc Lunsway said it could have been a lot worse, if it weren’t for the hard work of his crew and other responding departments.

“I know it’s a big loss, but all the work paid off,” Lunsway said, “They saved a lot of the books a lot of the areas can be reused and remodeled and continue on.”

Whether it’s a historic building on K-State’s campus in flames, a person in need of medical attention, or a false alarm, Horne treats every call the same because of his love for the job.

“I could do everything I wanted to do here,” Hone explained, “I could work with people, I could be physical, I could be inside, I could be outside. I mean, you’re using every part of your brain and your body to do this job.”

“He’s always smiling, he’s always happy,” Lunsway said, “He really wants to do well with his skills so he does a great job for the community.”

Horne credits his mother and his faith for pushing him in the right direction.

“I learned a lot about dealing with people and wanting to be around people from my church too,” Horne said, “So that’s what’s caused me to turn out the way that I am.”

Lunsway says Horne’s vibrant personality is an incredible asset to the department and those he serves.


Posted by Gwen Dorr Romine, KSFFA Webmaster
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