The Real Lives Behind a 911 Call

By Jan*, a dispatcher in Oregon
Navigators First Responder Ministry

The Real Lives Behind a 911 Call | Navigators First Responders Ministry | Female 911 dispatcher on the phone

I’m a 911 dispatcher and my fiancé is a deputy sheriff in the same county, so sometimes we work the same incidents from opposite sides of the radio.

About a year ago, I worked one of the toughest calls ever—my fiancé responded to a horrifying officer-involved shooting. At times during the following weeks, I found myself struggling to reconcile my role as a dispatcher and the daily stresses of being in a relationship with a deputy.

After that incident, Amy and Anna of Navigators First Responder Ministry reached out to me to say that they cared and that they were praying for me. Usually 911 dispatchers remain behind the scenes, unnoticed and without support. I’d never had anyone encourage me to stay healthy physically, mentally, and spiritually. Navigators understand the unique make-up of first responders and their spouses, and genuinely connect. They show love and support with their time, energy, eagerness to learn, and their words of encouragement—and let’s not forget the donated treats and coffee cart!

The people I’ve met through The Navigators are true friends who genuinely care for me and all of my co-workers. I consistently get messages checking in and asking about prayer needs. It truly does make an impact on my overall well-being.

Through The Navigators, I’ve met many other first-responder spouses, which has been a huge encouragement. It’s a whole different world, and just knowing what I am feeling is normal and not unique to me is a blessing. It has inspired me to also reach out and encourage others. Navigators build supportive relationships with those who go through the rollercoaster of life that comes with loving a first responder.

Pray that the Lord would keep our first responders safe as they serve communities across the country while we are in the midst of the COVID-19 crisis. Pray that the Navigators First Responder Ministry would continue to share hope and love that only God can bring. Praise God for the ministry to police, fire fighters, and paramedics who work daily to keep our communities strong and safe during this hard season. Amen.

*Name changed.


  1. 911 Dispatchers are the FIRST first responders! They first hear the messages of terror and sadness and send appropriate help! All prayers should include them!

Leave a Reply

By commenting, you agree to our Code of Conduct.