The DeLand Fire Department relocated to a new building last month and the most amazing thing happened at the grand opening.
As the public toured the new station and enjoyed refreshments, another member of the community, a stray beagle-mix, wandered in to have a look around.
DeLand Community Information Specialist, Ava Hanner, said they eventually caught the dog and turned him over to animal control. She joked with the Fire Chief Todd Allen that they should keep him.
And they did – but only after following protocol.
The dog was placed on a stray hold to see if anyone would come forward to claim him. He was not microchipped and after 30 days at the shelter with no inquires he was adopted by the fire department.
He was named Henry after the founder of the city and is the station’s new mascot.
“We’re adopting! Meet Henry “Hank” DeLand, the newest resident of Station 81,” posted the department.
He has a very important job.
Henry will live at the station to help relieve stress and bring joy to the firefighters.
“The goal of having a station dog is to provide some love and comfort to our crews as they come and go throughout their long 24-hour shifts away from home,” they said.
The sweet fella is already making himself at home. He was pictured in the driver’s seat of a fire truck and napping on one of his many beds in the station. In addition to being a source of comfort for his coworkers, Henry will accompany the firefighters to community events.
The residents are thrilled by the news and many businesses offered free treats for Henry and the firefighters as a thank you. One person wrote, “That’s what I love about Deland firefighters not only are you good at your job but you have heart, compassion, and community involvement. DFD is #1 at that!”
Henry is in good hands and in the process of getting neutered and up to date on all his shots. Follow DeLand Fire Department on Facebook for more updates and to see all the life-saving work the firefighters are doing.
Who adopted who?