It started as a quiet day, and firefighters at Jacksonville Fire Station 1 decided to use that to do some training. But things changed quickly.
To take advantage of downtime Sunday, firefighters decided to conduct an elevator training at a parking garage near the Jacksonville Landing, fire officials said on Facebook. As they completed training, firefighters standing around talking suddenly noticed something strange: throngs of people running from the Landing.
“This was an odd sight to all of us and quite perplexing,” officials said in the post.
A man walked over, said he had been shot, and rescuers went into action.
“At that point, training, experience and instinct take over. A few of us tended to the injured guy who approached us, and the rest of us formed a team and moved cautiously across the street to the restaurant this guy came from. Our active shooting training told us the scene needed to be cleared by JSO before we were to enter, fortunately, JSO was quick to act on this day,” officials said in the post.
Some firefighters went inside, although the scene was still active, and started checking out victims, officials said.
David Katz, 24, of Baltimore, opened fire killing two people and injuring 11 others before killing himself during a shooting at a video game competition.
“This was a scene that none of us will soon forget, and probably just too graphic to put the details out on social media," officials said.
Florida Gov. Rick Scott met with the firefighters when he visited Jacksonville in the wake of the shooting.
The team of firefighters said they are proud of how they and the department overall responded.
“We are a Station full of tradition, we laugh together, we play together, and today we went as deep into the trenches together as we probably can. We go together and we leave together. 1 team, 1 family,” officials said in the post.
Thank you for reading the Journal-News and for supporting local journalism. Subscribers: log in for access to your daily ePaper and premium newsletters.
Thank you for supporting in-depth local journalism with your subscription to the Journal-News. Get more news when you want it with email newsletters just for subscribers. Sign up here.