STONE MOUNTAIN, Ga. -- Walter Parker, an Atlanta Fire Rescue Battalion Chief, has been saving lives and putting out fires for 29 years but for the first time, he became a victim.
Just before dawn on Friday morning, Parker smelled smoke coming from downstairs in his house.
"I opened the basement door and I saw a lot of heavy smoke and fire down there. I closed the door down there, went back upstairs, woke everyone up and made sure everybody was up and got them out of the house," Parker explained
The DeKalb Fire Department fought the blaze but not before the ground floor collapsed into the basement and the house was destroyed.
Parker lost everything.
"I never thought it would be me, never thought it would be me," he said.
However, despite the devastating loss for the Chief who commands the Fire Battalion at Hartsfield-Jackson International Airport, Parker is philosophical.
"I've worked downtown for 8 years. It's one of the busiest stations in the City and down the street we had homeless people and they didn't have anything. I lost everything but still have a lot," Parker said.
The Help Desk asked Parker what he, his wife and son needed and he was quick to respond. They said they needed clothing and the Help Desk wasted no time trying to supply their need.
They Help Desk contacted Saks Fifth Avenue Off-Fifth, Macy's and Target and within hours they all stepped forward and agreed to assist in outfitting the family.
The Help Desk has pledged to aid him 24/7 with any othernecessitiesthe family may need.