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GARLAND Garland firefighters set out Saturday afternoon on a very personal rescue mission to help one of their own.

Garland Fire Department Chief Raymond Knight considered 29-year-old Devon Colbert one of the best. "If you looked up model firefighter, Devon s picture would be beside it."

Colbert, a husband and father of two young children, was badly injured in a December car accident. He was his family s sole breadwinner, which leaves his comrades now with some pretty big boots to fill.

"Devon is our family. Devon is our brother. Emily is our sister, and that is just the way it is," said firefighting colleague Jerry Click. "We take care of each other. We take care of our own."

Click and other Garland firefighters joined a charity chili cook-off in Garland Saturday to pass the boot and take up collections for the Colbert family s living expenses and mounting medical bills.

"It s humbling, and it s a huge blessing to go through something so tragic and life-changing and have all these people behind you supporting you, said Colbert s wife, Emily.

Colbert s colleagues are already planning future fundraisers. They re hoping that the community he served so proudly will now answer the call to help him.

E-mail jwheeler@wfaa.com

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