Firefighter helps veteran suffering from PTSD episode on airplane

don’t just fight fire.

The captain of a South Carolina fire department helped calm a fellow passenger down who was in distress. According to reports, the other passenger was a veteran who was suffering from a PTSD crisis.

Captain Bobby Davidson, who was flying home with his family from vacation, rendered assistance to the passenger and was able to prevent an emergency landing.

Captain Bobby Davidson, who was flying home with his family from vacation, rendered assistance to the passenger and was able to prevent an emergency landing. (Burton Fire District)

Captain Bobby Davidson, who was flying home on an American Airlines flight from a family vacation on June 15th, rendered assistance to the passenger and was able to prevent an emergency landing, according to a post from the Burton Fire District. The firefighter was also able to keep other passengers calm during the ordeal.

The Burton Fire Department confirmed to Fox News that the other passenger is a military veteran and was experiencing a PTSD crisis. While the flight crew was concerned that the plane may need to make an emergency landing, Capt. Davidson stepped in to help.

The firefighter is part of a specially trained support team that helps other firefighters deal with tragedy and PTSD. Capt. Davidson used his training to keep the other veteran calm and the plane was able to land without diverting its course.

The Burton Fire District shared a letter from American Airlines with Fox News where the company formally thanked Capt. Davidson for his assistance. 

The airline wrote, “We are all grateful that you were on board and freely offered your medical expertise when it was needed most. Mr. Davidson, without a doubt, you greatly improved a difficult situation.”

On Facebook, the Burton Fire District wrote, “Burton Fire Department Captain/EMT was recently recognized by an airline for rendering assistance to a passenger in distress, calming other passengers, and preventing an emergency landing. The flight landed on time, at its destination, where the passenger received further aid. Burton FD firefighters have a history of rendering aid while off duty.”

The post continued to detail other instances that the department’s members have helped out members of the public while not on duty.

“In 2016, a Burton firefighter saved a woman off duty by performing CPR,” the post says. “In 2017, an offduty Burton chief rescued two kayakers without flotation who capsized, and in 2019 a Burton chief was recognized for saving a man by performing CPR while in line at Disney. Night and day, we’re always ‘on duty,’ ready, willing, and trained to act. It’s what we do and who we are.”

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