A long-time Wichita firefighter is fighting the ultimate battle.
Twenty-four-year-veteran Curt Mohr has brain cancer and is currently recovering from surgery.
The people who work with firefighter Mohr describe him as a jokester. Even going as far to say he was joking and in good spirits when he got out of surgery.
But the department says it’s not the same without him around, so they’re doing all they can to help make his presence felt.
“It’s a little quiet especially over the last week. It is very quiet,” says Wichita Fire Captain Joshua Pavelski
Things are not the same at Station 21.
“When you were just working with somebody, the day before, actually that morning of, and then a couple of hours you hear from them in the hospital, you wonder what went wrong,” says Pavelski.
Mohr’s jacket is still there, his helmet, and all of his equipment. But currently, he is recovering from surgery.
“It is very shocking,” says Pavelski. “Complete shock.”
Pavelski is Mohr’s captain, but at the end of the day, they are more like family.
“When something happens like this, that is horrible, it hits home. It hits home here. It hits home back with my family so it is just not what you want to hear obviously,” explains Pavelski.
Pavelski describes Mohr as a dedicated worker, but someone who could cut loose when the job was done. He says that has not changed since Mohr was diagnosed with cancer.
“It feels good to talk to the old Curt and knowing that he didn’t lose anything,” says Pavelski.
But there’s still a lot of uncertainty.
“We are in a more serious mode that is for sure,” says Pavelski.
The Wichita Fire Department is trying to keep morale up. On each call, Mohr’s jacket is on board and his helmet right next to them.
“We like to have everybody with us and that is just little sign that Curt is with us on each alarm,” says Pavelski.
To donate to the families, a GoFundMe page has been set up.