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GOOD DAY, AMERICA
By H. P. Oliver
2021 HPO Productions
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6:00 p.m.--Sunday--March 5, 1939
As a cop and a reporter, I went to more than my share of fire and accident scenes, but not enough to take them in stride. I'm not sure if taking them in stride is even possible.
Something that always strikes me about such situations is an ambiance I've never encountered anywhere else. These scenes are always lit by an eerie flickering red glow—a combination of the flashing lights on the fire trucks and police cruisers responding to the crisis. The sound track almost always includes the wail of approaching sirens and the unintelligible jabbering of police and fire radios turned up loud so they can be heard by those working away from their trucks and cars. Overall, there is an adrenaline-driven urgency to perform heroic tasks men know are beyond their powers and abilities, but they try, anyway.
In this case, however, layers of smoke and an orange glow from the windows of a large burning building added a vaguely ethereal feeling to the scene. A monu-