In Memory of Paramedic John Michael Rossiter

This page is in memory of Paramedic John Michael Rossiter who died in the line of duty 29 September 2003...age 31...
No longer with his fellow Paramedics...but forever in their hearts and by their sides..

As hurricane Juan struck us with all it's vengeance we all took refuge..however..Paramedics John Rossiter and his partner Gilles Boudreau placed their fob in the dash of their unit...turned the ignition on and rolled into nature’s hell because that’s who and want they are...Paramedics. They knew that this could be a busy and dangerous night...that there could possibly be serious injuries as a result of the incoming hurricane and they could possibly be the patients only hope. They knew that individuals who may have heart problems could be at risk from the anxieties...the fear of what was about to fall upon us. Along with their fellow Paramedics they headed out into the now darkened night because to them not being out there to help and save lives was not even a consideration... they were Paramedics with Nova Scotia's EHS...our "Angels of Mercy"...

Location of John's last base...

Soon a memorial began to rise at the scene...a show of respect for a fallen comrade...

A lone minature of a Paramedic stands guard over the patches left at the memorial by fellow Paramedics...
their way of saying to John..."you were an inspiration to us all and we'll miss you"...

He’d whistle Christmas tunes in August for his family on "the rock"
A big grin on his face...”where're we to” is all he'd ask as he’d jump into the truck
Now and forever when the wind cries from the south we will remember the day
With a tear in our eye and a heavy heart how John was suddenly taken away...

Few will ever know the risks you’ve taken and of the lives you have saved
With your sharpened skills and knowledge in this world a difference you have made
From flat line to V-fib with God’s guiding hand you knew what had to be done
To see that a mother’s child would have a chance to see the morning sun...

The fortunate ones who knew you saw you as one of the best
You set a goal for the were an inspiration for the rest
In your short life you’ve changed the world for many which will last forever
A claim few can make...yet you did...Paramedic John Michael Rossiter...

A Paramedic Prayer

As I perform my duty Lord
Whatever may be the call
Help to guide and keep me safe
From dangers big and small
I want to serve and do my best
No matter what the scene
I pledge to keep my skills refined
My judgement quick and keen
This calling to give of myself
Most do not understand
But I stand ready all the time
To help my fellow man
To have the chance to help a child
Restore his laugh with glee
A word of thanks I might not hear
But knowing is enough for me
The praise of man is fine for some
But I feel truly blessed
That you Oh Lord have chosen me
To serve with the EMS.

Author Unknown

The Paramedic stood and faced God which must always come to pass.
He hoped his uniform was clean...he'd gotten dressed kinda fast...

"Step forward now...Paramedic.
How shall I deal with you ?
Have you always turned the other cheek ?
To my church have you been true ?"

The Paramedic squared his shoulders and said...
"No Lord...I guess I ain't
Cause those of us who wade in blood
Can't always be a saint...

I've had to work most Sundays
And at times my talk was tough...
And at times I've been violent
Cause the streets can get awfully rough...

But I never took a penny
That wasn't mine to keep...
Although I worked a lot of overtime
When those bills got too steep...

And I never passed a cry for help
Though at times I shook with fear...
And sometimes...God forgive me
I wept unmanly tears...

I know I don't deserve a place
Among the people here...
They never wanted me around
Except to calm their fear...

If you have a place for me Lord...
It needn't be so grand...
I never expected or had very much
But if you don't I undestand..."

There was silence all around the throne
Where saints had often trod...
As the Paramedic waited quietly
For the judgement of his God...

"Step forward now Paramedic
You've borne your burdens well...
Now walk peacefully on heavens streets
Cause you've already done your time in hell."

Author Unknown

I Want To Tell You Lies

I want to tell that little boy his Mom will be just fine
I want to tell that dad we got his daughter out in time
I want to tell that wife her husband will be home tonight
I don't want to tell it like it is, I want to tell them lies

You didn't put their seat belts on, you feel you killed your kids
I want to say you didn't, but in a way you did
You pound your fists into my chest, you're hurting so inside
I want to say you'll be OK, I want to tell you lies

You left chemicals within his reach and now it's in his eyes
I want to say your son will see, not tell you he'll be blind
You ask me if he'll be OK, with pleading in your eyes
I want to say that yes he will, I want to tell you lies

I can see you're crying as your life goes up in smoke
If you'd maintained that smoke alarm, your children may have woke
Don't grab my arm and ask me if your family is alive
Don't make me tell you they're all dead, I want to tell you lies

I want to say she'll be OK, you didn't take her life
I hear you say you love her and you'd never hurt your wife
You thought you didn't drink too much, you thought that you could drive
I don't want to say how wrong you were, I want to tell you lies

You only left her for a moment, it happens all the time
How could she have fell from there, you thought she couldn't climb
I want to say her neck's not broke, that she will be just fine
I don't want to say she's paralyzed, I want to tell you lies

I want to tell this teen his buddies didn't die in vain
Because he thought that it'd be cool to try to beat that train
I don't want to tell him this will haunt him all his life
I want to say that he'll forget, I want to tell him lies

You left the cabinet open and your daughter found the gun
Now you want me to undo the damage that's been done
You tell me she's your only child, you say she's only five
I don't want to say she wont see six, I want to tell you lies

He fell into the pool when you just went to grab the phone
It was only for a second that you left him there alone
If you let the damn phone ring perhaps your boy would be alive
But I don't want to tell you that, I want to tell you lies

The fact that you were speeding caused that car to overturn
And we couldn't get them out of there before the whole thing burned
Did they suffer? Yes, they suffered, as they slowly burned alive
But I don't want to say those words, I want to tell you lies

But I have to tell it like it is, until my shift is through
And then the real lies begin, when I come home to you,
You ask me how my day was, and I say it was just fine
I hope you understand, sometimes, I have to tell you lies.

Author: Kalvere

When God Made Paramedics

When God made Paramedics he was into his sixth day of overtime when an angel appeared and said, "You're doing a lot of fiddling around on this one."

And the Lord said, "Have you read the specs on this order ? A Paramedic has to be able to carry an injured person up a wet grassy hill in the dark... dodge stray bullets to reach a dying child while unarmed...enter homes the health inspector wouldn't touch and at the same time not wrinkle his uniform."

“He has to be able to lift 3 times his own weight...crawl into wrecked cars with barely enough room to move and console a grieving mother as he is doing CPR on a baby he knows will never breathe again."

"He has to be in top mental condition at all times...running on no sleep... black coffee and half eaten meals. And he has to have six pairs of hands."

The angel shook her head slowly and said, "Six pairs of way."

"It's not the hands that are causing me problems," said the Lord, "it's the three pairs of eyes a Paramedicc has to have."

"That's on the standard model ?" asked the angel.

The Lord nodded. "One pair that sees open sores as he's drawing blood and asks the patient if they could be HIV positive," (When he already knows and wishes he'd gone into teaching) "Another pair here in the side of his head for his partners' safety. And another pair of eyes here in front that can look reassuringly at a bleeding victim and say, You'll be all right ma'am when he knows it isn't so."

"Lord,” said the angel...touching his sleeve... "rest and work on this tomorrow."

"I can't”... said the Lord..."I already have a model that can talk a 250 pound drunk out from behind a steering wheel without incident and feed a family of five on a sinful Paramedic’s paycheck."

The angel circled the model of the Paramedic very slowly..."Can it think ?" she asked.

"You bet"...said the Lord. "It can tell you the symptoms of 100 illnesses... recite drug calculations in it's sleep... intubate...defibrillate...medicate and continue CPR nonstop over terrain that any doctor would fear...and still it keeps it's sense of humor.”

“This Paramedic also has phenomenal personal control. He can deal with a multi-victim trauma...coax a frightened elderly person to unlock their door...comfort a murder victim's family and then read in the daily paper how Paramedics were unable to locate a house quickly enough allowing the person to die. A house which had no street house numbers... no phone to call back." Finally the angel bent over and ran her finger across the cheek of the Paramedic. "There's a leak"...she pronounced. "I told you that you were trying to put too much into this model."

"That's not a leak" said the Lord "...It's a tear."

"What's the tear for ?" asked the angel.

"It's for all the bottled-up emotions...for patients they've tried in vain to save...for commitment to that hope that they will make a difference in a person's chance to survive...for life."

"You're a genius"...said the angel.

The Lord looked somber as he said.... "I didn't put it there...

Since 1979...27 Paramedics across Canada have died in the line of duty...
In 2003...there have been three line of duty deaths to this date...