Gainesville firefighters part of flood rescue drama - - No One Gets You Closer

Gainesville firefighters part of flood rescue drama

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GAINESVILLE, Texas -- It's in our DNA around these parts to want to help in times of crisis. The Gainesville Fire Department water rescue team is doing just that.

Six members traveled to Houston to help with rescues in the catastrophic flooding, and the heroics of one were seen worldwide across social media.

Randy Prestage and five of his colleagues headed to Houston on Friday. Prestage was pictured carrying a woman to safety through rain-swollen streets.

"A lot of high water areas... a lot of stranded motorists... you know, people experiencing the worst part of Hurricane Harvey," he told us in a telephone interview. "Just a lot of people needing help."

The Gainesville firefighters have been working alongside many other rescue teams to help people trapped in cars and houses.

Houston flooding

"There's people from all over the country that are here, and everybody's working for one goal," Prestage said. "I just hope everybody comes out safe."

The department said they don't know how long the Gainesville team will be needed in the Bayou City, but they have six more team members ready to rotate in for relief.

The department also has firefighters working longer shifts in Gainesville to cover for their hard-working comrades.

"Well, now we have to backfill for those six guys here, so a lot of the guys in this area on the fire department are working double shifts to make up for the shortfall," Assistant Chief Wayne Twiner explained. 

But with that hard work comes a lot of professional satisfaction.

"All the first responders and people that I work with have stepped up and helped these people out."

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