KINGSPORT, Tenn. (WJHL) — This week’s Community Hero has firefighting in his blood. He is a third-generation firefighter, but a tragedy almost led him away from the fire station.
Marcus Dykes grew up around firefighters. His grandfather was a captain, and his mother worked as a volunteer firefighter.
“To me, at the time still being pretty young, I was pretty impressed with my mom, and admired her for being a firefighter,” Dykes said.
In 1988, Dykes life changed when his grandfather died in the line of duty.
“It was pretty…traumatic,” he said.
As an adult, Dykes was moved to go into the family business. Now, Captain Dykes is a firefighter and a paramedic, and demands excellence from himself, and his crew.
“But, I try to keep that in mind to be the best employee or best fireman, the best paramedic, the best officer I can be,” he said. “Because, if I have an emergency, that’s who I would want. That’s who I would want coming to aid me or my family.”
That high standard includes trusting and leaning on teammates when heading into a potentially dangerous situation.
“We’re dealing with the cause that people are slowing down to take a look and wonder what’s going on. We’re actually in there trying to stabilize these situations,” he remarks.
Dykes knows he is where he needs to be, and honoring the family name, wouldn’t make a living doing anything else.
“No. Not at all. No. This is it,” he said. “To me, this is the best job that you could possibly have.”