Samantha Everhart Scholarship Winning Essay:

First responders are a family within the profession; once you’re in, you’re in. We always have each other’s backs, and it doesn’t matter which entity you’re with. We support each other. It takes a different kind of person to deal with the dying, the hurt, and the sick, especially when the wreck initially happens or in the acute shock phase of some of the worst days of people’s lives. Fire, EMS, and law enforcement work together every day to protect property and save lives, and none of them could do it without the others.

I started volunteering in firefighting when I was 16 and enrolled in an EMT class the summer after I graduated high school at the ripe old age of 17. I had no idea what I was doing, but it started me down the path of where I am today. My original plan was to work as an EMT through college; I was a Criminal Justice major and wanted to be an FBI Agent. I had moved out of my parent’s house and was living out of my car and the fire station until I saved enough to get an apartment. Little did I know at the time it was hard to get an EMT-Basic job as a teenager, especially a well-paying one. At 19, I started working for a county 911 ambulance service and fell in love. I couldn’t do much as an EMT so I put myself through paramedic school. I quickly rose up to being an in charge paramedic and was soon training new EMTs. I loved the autonomy of being able to make decisions about patient care and loved being out in the field. After a few years of doing that, I came to the realization that I would eventually like to have a family and make more money and work less; at that time, I was working 24 hours on and 48 hours off and making $19/hour as a seasoned paramedic. So I did an online paramedic-RN transition nursing school, and in the meantime I met my now husband. As soon as I graduated I got a job in an ER didn’t like it. I didn’t like that I now had to take orders from a doctor, and the idea of being stuck in a hospital all day was almost claustrophobic. After a few years of being in the ER, I went back and did my RN-BSN online bridge program. Boy, was I in for a treat the same weekend we bought and moved into our first house. I started my BSN and found out we were expecting our son. Working full-time nights and doubling up on classes to hurry through school before the baby came and being extremely sick during my first trimester, then being readmitted two weeks post-partum with an infection following my emergent c-section, was a challenge, but I pulled through it with a 3.6 GPA. I continued working in a very busy ER but always missed being in the field. There aren’t many avenues for nurses in a pre-hospital setting and I set my goal on becoming a flight nurse. After some experience I started applying for a flight job, but none offered me a job-they all wanted some ICU experience. So, after swallowing my pride, I transferred to the ICU. After being there for six months, my husband lost his job abruptly. Ironically, two days later, the director of one of the flight companies called me and offered me a job out of the blue. It was a dream of mine and a passion, and after much deliberation with my husband and a lot of creative budget cuts, I accepted the position with the $15,000 pay cut to go along with it. I absolutely love my job. I have been here for two and a half years and look forward to the unknown and what the job is going to bring each day. The scenery is amazing and working in the confines of a helicopter is a challenge I accept. I am now the Base Clinical Lead, so I am in charge of training new hires and for the ongoing training and education for our personnel, including paramedics and nurses. I have kept my paramedic certification over the years and can fill either role within the company, depending on the need. I will say the hardest part of my job is the schedule and pay. I work 24-hour shifts for such a pay cut while my husband is working part-time retail and going to school on my days off to offset the cost of my son’s pre-k. Being gone for so long takes a toll on my family. I think a fair pay raise for first responders, along with better hours, would be a blessing. I have recently decided to go back to school to fulfill my long-term goal of nursing education. I have enrolled in my Master of Science in Nursing Education and plan to shape the lives of future nurses.

Recently, I was invited to a ceremony for a car wreck victim I was involved in helping save. Without the police to secure the scene and shut down the highway, the fire department to cut him out of the car and secure a landing zone for the helicopter, and the ambulance service to initiate patient care and call us, we couldn’t have done it. We are a well-oiled machine and we all need each other to effectively and safely do our jobs. The room was filled with all the first responders, along with the patient and his family. We don’t get to experience the thank yous much, and we don’t really expect it, but when there’s a good outcome, and we can see we made a difference in someone’s life, it affirms we are in the right profession, and we are doing our jobs to the best of our abilities. We are all in this for the people.

First Responders Scholarship Winner - Samantha Everhart I McCraw Law Group

Two people in blue shirts

Get The Help You Need Contact McCraw Law Group

If you are in need of a personal injury attorney in North Texas, please contact the team at McCraw Law Group today. We are ready to help you in a broad range of serious accident and injury legal issues, and offer multiple ways to reach us.

Get a Free Virtual Consultation
Contact us media
Contact us media
Logo media

If you are in need of a personal injury attorney in North Texas, please contact the team at McCraw Law Group today. We are ready to help you in a broad range of serious accident and injury legal issues, and offer multiple ways to reach us.

Accessibility: If you are vision-impaired or have some other impairment covered by the Americans with Disabilities Act or a similar law, and you wish to discuss potential accommodations related to using this website, please contact our Accessibility Manager at (972) 945-1173.