WINTER PARK | Jack Timmes and Eddie Emons are Catholic school buddies who graduated from St. Margaret Mary and Bishop Moore High School. Now adults, both devote their lives to public service – one as a law enforcement deputy and the other as a firefighter.
Timmes was 14 when a missionary trip to Louisiana sparked a love of service. When he returned home, he told stories of an adventurous ministry leader who was also a firefighter. Timmes’ family encouraged him to try a ride to see if he really liked the career and he did. Witnessing a car accident in high school reinforced that decision.
“I saw a bad accident happen in front of me and without even thinking I jumped up to help people out of the car,” Timmes recalled. “I came home and told my dad and he said I should be a firefighter and that was meant for me. I prayed over it, and it was like a real call.
Prayerful discernment runs in the family. Timmes’ father is a deacon at St. Margaret Mary Parish in Winter Park. His grandfather was also a deacon, soldier and policeman. This trust in the Lord and selflessness keeps Timmes going.
“I only knew my grandfather shortly before he died, but the stories I’ve heard about him and knowing what he did – that’s one of the most things that are close to my heart,” said Timmes. “He was very involved in the Church.
Timmes also leans on Emons, his birth friend who studied criminal justice and is currently the deputy for Orange County. They both have difficult days at work, meeting people who are hurting and afraid. When the burden gets heavy, a warm conversation often helps.
“It’s nice to have a best friend who’s also in a difficult area and has faith so we can share our thoughts and feelings about it,” Timmes said.
Emons agrees: “We both have the same beliefs and views on everything, so we can fall back on each other when a normal person might not understand everything we’re going through and everything. what we see because she doesn’t see it every day. daytime.”
Emons has always had a desire to work in law enforcement. When the Winter Park police visited his schools, Emons would stop and chat with them. When he accompanied the police while at university, he was inspired by the positive impact of the police on the community.
“I’ve always felt the call to help others,” Emons added. “I feel a lot of joy in my life when I’m able to help solve someone else’s problem or overcome a situation. Throughout the shift, I was able to observe agents and realized that with every call we made, there was a solution we could help the person with. I realized that becoming an officer would help me solve problems and help people more on a day-to-day basis at work.
His faith led him to law enforcement so he could “help others in need of guidance.” During serious incidents, Emons often finds himself praying for the families he meets and then becoming the hands and feet of Christ. After answering a call from a mother in need at Christmas, Emons and her colleagues bought bunk beds and toys for her children who had nothing.
“We’re always taught to do God’s work by going the extra mile to make someone happy and help them in a bad situation,” Emons said. “It helps you understand and be the best person you can be for everyone, no matter what that person is going through.”
The relationship between Timmes and Emons mimics Christ’s love for his people. As Pope Francis said in his Apostolic Exhortation, Christus Vivit, “Friendship is a gift of life and a grace of God. Through our friends, the Lord refines us and leads us to maturity. Faithful friends, who stand with us in difficult times, are also a reflection of the love of the Lord, his sweet and consoling presence in our lives.