On Tuesday, Oct. 22, San Antonio Fireman Greg Garza, 49, lost his life after suffering injuries in a freak accident while making a call to a San Antonio hotel.
Garza had served with the San Antonio Fire Department for 17 years. He was with the Hazardous Material Response Team. His accident was the result of Garza, wearing bunker gear, falling from a fire vehicle and being run over by a motorist.
Garza’s parents, Joe and Bertha Garza, reside in Pleasanton.
Joe said, “I can’t say enough about the San Antonio Fire Department. They’re great starting with Chief Hood, all his four district chiefs and captains and all the other officers… and his crew at No. 1 Station, downtown. The four district chiefs met with us and our daughter-in-law, Sonia, right here at this table. (They were Battalion Chiefs from different sections of San Antonio). They were very gracious. The day before the funeral they put us up in a hotel.”
The Pleasanton Fire Department was represented at the Wake and at the funeral. A lot of the area fire departments were there.
“They were numerous and that was at a time when we were grieving and it seemed like a blur at times. I had never seen a ceremony like that. And I don’t want to see another one like it.”
Greg’s mom, Bertha, said, “It’s amazing. The fire department, police department, they went far and beyond to help us…to be with us. As family, they did so much for us. Like I said, it was just so many services that they performed for us. They had four ladies with the Family Services part of the fire department.
“These ladies are firefighters themselves, but they also serve the familes of fallen firefighters.”
“They helped our daughter-in-law, Sonia. They also were here at our home in Pleasanton, constantly,” said Joe. “If we call them right now, they’ll come. The wives of the firefighters in about another hour and a half (4:00 p.m. Monday, October 28) will be bringing us food. This has gone on all through the weekend and through today.”
“They just show up,” said Bertha. They call us to let us know a while before they arrive.”
Joe said, “Put down in your report to the people in the community, that when they see a fire truck or an emergency vehicle… stay away from that vehicle… don’t drive right by it…keep your distance.”
Bertha said, “When people see an incident like this…they see a fire truck…a police car…slow down…wherever it is. Have some compassion, respect for our firefighters, EMS and law officers. They’re working for us. They’re there to protect and save our lives.”