'Appreciation and gratitude': Toronto couple thank Calgary fire crew for treating and transporting daughter to hospital

A Toronto couple expressed appreciation and gratitude for the fire fighters who treated and transported their three-year-old daughter to Children's hospital over the weekend.

The child suffered a serious fall and the fire department said it had no choice but to transport the child itself, because there was no ambulance available to help.

"Two days before that we were in Jasper," said Daniel Langdon, the father of Tara. "We were planning to go to Drumheller after Calgary or somewhere along the way. It could have happened anywhere in Alberta. Thank God it happened in Westmount and we were able to get to Alberta Children's Hospital."

Visiting from Toronto, little Tara and her parents were staying with friends in northwest Calgary when the young girl fell, hit her head, then began to seizure.

Calgary Fire fighters arrived first, providing medical care.

They said 911 couldn't provide an ETA on an ambulance.

They called an on-duty doctor to get emergency advice, and were told to get the girl to hospital right away.

She was loaded into the fire truck which isn't equipped for patients.

Paramedics showed up a minute after the fire crew left, 20 minutes after the first 911 call.

The couple said their hearts sank upon learning paramedics weren’t on their way, but are grateful fire crews were ready to do whatever was necessary to help their daughter.

"We're so glad that they did," Langdon said. "We got Alberta Children's Hospital (and) they had a team ready for us, and her oxygen had been really low so it was very critical that she got there as soon as possible, so we were very thankful that she got the care she needed."

The little girl is doing much better. Tuesday, she was smiling with her new friends at the fire hall.

Tonight they are staying with family in Edmonton to give Tara more time to recover.

Yesterday, Calgary Fire chief Steve Dongworth called out Alberta Health Services, calling its EMS response system broken, and that this latest example is proof of that.