Justin Hewitt is the Harker Heights Fire Department’s newest firefighter and paramedic.

Hewitt, 23, a Whitney resident, got his feet wet with his new department during his second shift when he responded to a fire on West Bob White Lane on Sept. 25.

He started with the department Sept. 21.

“I love what I do because I like to help the community and it’s a great adrenaline rush,” he said. “I’ve wanted to be a firefighter for as long as I can remember, and I loved fire trucks growing up.”

Hewitt started volunteering when he was 18. He attended a fire academy, EMT school and then paramedic school. He has been a professional firefighter for the past three years.

“I heard this was a great department in a great city and that there would be a lot of opportunities for me here,” he said. “So far, I really enjoy coming to work everyday and I work with a great bunch of people.”

Since shift work consists of being on for 24 hours and off for 48 hours, and shifts often eat meals together and sleep under the same roof, the firehouse acts as a second home to the 43 Harker Heights firefighters.

“He’s fitting in really well to our family here and he’s very eager and enthusiastic,” Lt. Michael Sheperd said. “It’s obvious he really likes being a firefighter. It’s also nice for us old guys to pass down things we have learned over the years to young guys like Justin who are eager and ready to learn.”

In true firefighter spirit, Sheperd said he looks forward to pranking Hewitt.

“It’s all done in good fun,” he said. “Getting pranked is a right of passage and something we all enjoy being a part of.”

Contact Vanessa Lynch at vlynch@kdhnews.com or 254-501-7567.

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