Firefighter Nikos Roukoudoukis, who tried desperately over the last few days to save as many lives as possible in Attica, has made an emotional post on Facebook saying he is not a “hero” but a man in the line of duty who tried his best to battle the flames, which tragically took so many.
“Mati Attica 23-25 July 2018
Right now I’m on the bus and returning to my family at home. I’ll see my daughter and my wife again. I will embrace them like never before… I will take a bath and I will pretend to return slowly to my routine …. It’s nothing like that … You can not explain it either with words or with pictures … Besides, how can you explain something that you have not even digested yet ??? How much sadness and tragedy can happen within a few acres …? How many lost souls … taken unfairly and quickly …How many burned properties … – “Are you all well?” I was asking people I found along the way … – “How can we be good my boy?” Was the most common answer … and how can people be good when they have lost relatives, friends, neighbours and hope ??? – “At least you are alive” …. I’d say to try and calm them down… I do not know how to describe it all, I can not describe it and I do not know if it is possible…Do not forget …. You can not imagine how many people came to help. How many asked us if we wanted water and food … If we needed anything … And they still do. And they will continue to do so. Wonderful, simple people, without giving their names, giving hope and help, generously. A beauty in a time of horror and blackness.
No firefighter sees himself as a hero. He does not want to become a hero … He wants to help, to save, to do his job properly and with the above, to return home safely… And if they are heroes the firefighters, the super-heroes are the volunteers, the citizens who gave themselves, their houses, clothes, money and their time to help … Doctors, nurses, rescuers, police officers … Wonderful superhuman beings… this has changed me forever … good journey to all the beautiful lost souls, may your loss teach us how to prevent future disasters … so I hope…”