Father and son first responders share their story - News, Weather, Sports, Toledo, OH

Father and son first responders share their story

(Source: WTOL) (Source: WTOL)

After more than three years of remembering Toledo's two fallen firefighters and the trial of the man responsible for their deaths, the Toledo community heard different stories of heroism and brotherhood.

During the sentencing of Ray Abou Arab, the judge told the story of a father who told his son to go into a burning building without hesitation. The family of first responders only did what they were supposed to do the day of the fire.

It was Detective Jeff Dorner’s story, which wasn’t heard by many, that resonated with Judge Stacy Cook.

“A father who was a police officer on scene who looked his rookie firefighting son in the face and knowing the inferno he faced said 'you have to go in and get your guys', " said Judge Cook to the courtroom as she fought back tears while talking about Detective Dorner and his son, Firefighter Barrett Dorner.

"He came right up to me and said your guys are in there you gotta go get them, " said Barrett as he recalled his dad’s instructions.

It was a moment that could have separated the father and son forever. It was also a moment that they wouldn’t think twice about until months later.

"I can not imagine him watching me go in there and thinking 'this could be the last time I see him.' That is frightening in hindsight, but in the moment you just do what you do,” said Barrett.

The fatal fire that killed Privates Stephen Machcinski and Jamie Dickman was personal for the Toledo Fire Department, but even more so for Private Barrett who was in the same fire class as Jamie Dickman.

Barrett was taken back by a complete stranger’s reaction to his father's testimony and story.

“Something that happened to us affected someone else who wasn't there in such a way that they cried about it and they felt some of the pain we felt and that is just so surreal to have that perspective from something and have people texting you saying 'was that you and your dad?' and it's like yea it was."

Private Barrett was hesitant to talk about his efforts that day, because he said that day was about Stephen Machcinski and Jamie Dickman.

But he told his story to help keep his fallen brothers' story alive.

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