H-E-B partners thank firefighters with meal (video)

Sonny Long

Sept. 8, 2012 at 4:08 a.m.

Firefighters gather to share a meal prepared by H-E-B employees as part of the annual Helping Heroes event.

Firefighters gather to share a meal prepared by H-E-B employees as part of the annual Helping Heroes event.

Helping cook lunch for Victoria firefighters on Friday was a small token of appreciation for H-E-B partner Karen Zavala.

"I believe it's important to encourage our firefighters. We may not say it all the time, but we do appreciate what they do. Thank you, firefighters," said Zavala.

Zavala and other employees from H-E-B's two Victoria stores took part in the Helping Heroes program, serving meals to firefighters at the city's five fire stations.

Fellow partner Karen Kuecker, who helped prepare brisket, beans, potato salad, homemade Spanish rice and cake at Station 4, also said she is thankful for the work that firefighters do.

"It's important to show our firefighters how much we appreciate the job they do, day in and day out," she said. "It's not every person who will rush into a burning building when everyone else is trying to get out."

Joining Zavala and Kuecker cooking at Station 4 were partners Yenislen Dieguez and Taunyha Jacobs. Rick Bishop, general merchandise leader, helped serve about a half dozen men at Station 4.

The H-E-B Helping Heroes program is in its eighth year. Statewide, more than 3,000 H-E-B partners from 300 stores adopted more than 530 fire stations and prepared meals and helped out around the station during the day, according to a news release from H-E-B.

The community service project honors Sept. 11 as a National Day of Service and Remembrance that pays tribute to the rescue teams that risked and lost their lives at the World Trade Center, according to the news release.

Local firefighters are appreciative of H-E-B's efforts.

"It's great. They get to show their appreciation in their own way, and we appreciate it greatly," said Battalion Chief Bubba Bayer.

Capt. Michael Baecker agreed.

"It's always good to have someone acknowledge the job we are doing," Baecker said. "We appreciate them taking the time to come over and fix us lunch."



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