SLIDELL, La. — Everyday, firefighters risk their lives to save yours along with your home and belongings, but now one Slidell firefighter is in their shoes after losing everything in a large condo fire.
"It's your job, it's what you do, we see it a good bit, tragedy and devastation," said Fire Operator/EMT Dean Marullo.
As a 12-year firefighter and paramedic with St. Tammany Fire District One, Dustin Moreau has been there when someone loses everything.
"One of the main things we try to do is salvage as much of peoples lives and memories as we can and circumstances like this he really did, he lost everything," Marullo said.
Marullo is a close friend and coworker of Moreau. Emerald Forest Condominiums in Covington was in flames Thursday night. Many people lost everything they own, including Moreau.
"He basically just had the clothes on his back," said Fire Captain Ronnie Brennan.
Moreau is also a part time paramedic with New Orleans EMS.
"He was actually dropping a patient off at University Hospital when his phone, everybody started calling," said Dave Berns, President of Slidell Firefighters Association.
Moreau's girlfriend was there at the time and got out safely with their cat.
"But that was all they were able to save," Berns said.
The firefighters in St. Tammany Parish have rallied behind Moreau. They've made sure he has clothes, supplies, and one firefighter is even offering a place to stay.
"One of our firefighters has a rental house that happens to be vacant fight now so h'es offered it up to Dustin," Berns said.
He did have insurance and is already planning to fix up his home. In the meantime, the Slidell Firefighters Association is collecting gift cards at the St. Tammany Fire District One headquarters, at 1358 Corporate Square Slidell, La. 70458. They're also accepting monetary donations at the New Orleans Firemen’s Credit Union on Gause Boulevard in Slidell.
"We go on a lot of calls and Dustin really affects a lot of people's lives in a positive way," Brennan said.
Moreau has fought a lot of fires and now his department is making sure he's not alone for one of the toughest battles a firefighter can fight.
Investigators are still working to determine what caused the fire. Everyone made it out of the fire alive.