To the editor: Each year, the second week in April is designated as National Public Safety Telecommunicators Week.

It is a time to acknowledge and thank all of the people that work in this profession as public safety dispatchers. We have six public safety answering points in Berkshire County in North Adams, Williamstown, Great Barrington, Dalton, Pittsfield and at the Berkshire County Sheriff’s Office. Public safety dispatchers have unique training and talents that allow them to be exactly who you need when you call 911. Maybe a loved one is experiencing a medical emergency and the dispatcher is able to use their emergency medical dispatch training to talk you through providing help until they can get police, fire or EMS response. Maybe you are contemplating ending your life and the dispatcher, through their words and tone, gives you a reason to seek help instead. Maybe you are a police officer, EMT or firefighter whose safety depends upon the critical information gathered by the dispatcher to get you safely to the location of your call.

Whatever the reason, we should all be thankful for these first responders to every 911 call. Without them, the help that you need would not arrive. So please join me in recognizing them for the truly amazing work that they do every day. Let them know that you appreciate them and the jobs that they do and also thank their loved ones who support their crazy hours of shift work, which includes weekends and holidays. I am so thankful every day to be able to work with this group of well-trained 911 dispatchers; they remind me what it means to your job well so that others can be helped and never expect anything in return, which is true public service. They are humble, kind, compassionate and caring. They make sure — 24 hours a day, 365 days a year — that one of these trained 911 professionals is available to answer your call. People that they have helped refer to them as angels and heroes and those titles are well-deserved. They will always have my admiration, respect and love for all that they do to help keep us all safe. Thank you for a job well done.

Lt. Col. Thomas E. Grady, Pittsfield

The writer serves in the Berkshire County Sheriff’s Office.