Baby Yoda boosts morale on wildfire frontlines: ‘People broke down in tears’

Baby Yoda has joined forces with firefighters. 

As California reaches a devastating milestone, with over 4 million acres burned in wildfires, western firefighters could use a morale boost. 

Enter 5-year-old Carver and his grandmother, 54-year-old Sasha Tinning. The pair from Oregon were shopping for items to donate to firefighters when they noticed a Baby Yoda toy. 

“He said they could have a friend and I thought, everyone needs a friend, especially now,” Tinning told the Associated Press

So they sent the Baby Yoda along with a note that said, “Here is a friend for you in case you get lonely.” The gift resonated. 

Baby Yoda has been “a really big morale boost,” staff Sargeant Jaebyn Drake, a firefighter with the Oregon Air National Guard and “Star Wars” fan said. The toy is being passed around first responders all over the country who bring it to work to pose for selfies. Baby Yoda’s adventures are even being documented on the Facebook page Baby Yoda Fights Fires

“A lot of the people on my crew, I showed them the note and everything and they just loved it,” Drake told the Associated Press. “A couple people broke down in tears … It just really meant a lot to us and it was really emotional for a lot of people.”

Baby Yoda also made his way to the Oregon Department of Forestry where air tactical group supervisor TJ Ramos and took photos with the toy on their helicopter.

“You could instantly see everyone perk up a little bit, some smiles came on some straight faces and it was a different day,” Ramos said. “ I think it not only added some morale and just a lift to everyone, I think it added almost a connection to home life.”

Baby Yoda is very much in demand, after making his way through Colorado and Oregon, he has been requested by fire crews in California, Washington and Canada. 

“I’m hoping that we can keep it going,” Drake told the Associated Press. “He’s the 21st-century Smokey the Bear.”

If you enjoyed this story, In The Know also covered this augmented reality eyepiece that lets firefighters see through smoke.

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