ORANGE COUNTY, Fla. — Some Central Florida firefighters have returned home from the Panhandle following Hurricane Michael.

  • Firefighters returned Sunday from the Panhandle
  • Crews were helping with hurricane recovery efforts
  • Some firefighters are still in the Panhandle helping out

They returned Sunday to Orange County Fire Rescue headquarters for a reunion with loved ones.

Emergency vehicles guided vans carrying firefighters who went to help with hurricane recovery efforts.

Jesse Harris reunited with his wife and son.

"You miss somebody, you grow when you're gone," Harris said. "The love for them grows, when your gone being away from family is tough."

Harris and other firefighters from Orange County Fire Rescue, Seminole County, Edgewater, and Daytona Beach were part of a strike team that went to Calhoun County near Panama City to help out the fire department there.

"Most of their stations were destroyed and they couldn't even operate, so we were there to supplement and become their fire service," said Orange County Fire Rescue Battalion Chief Lee Reed.

They said they saw incredible images while helping.

"We saw a full train that was completely on the side the cars pulled together, trees gone as far as you can see, whole forests destroyed, homes, roadways, signs, bridges damaged," Reed said.

The crews helped out in any way they could.

"It's about all community helping each other out in times of need this is when communities come together," Reed said.

There are still crews from Central Florida helping in the Panhandle.