"It's just what we do as linemen," Cole said. "We help each other out. We help other utilities, and it's kind of rewarding to have people come up and say, 'Thanks for turning my power on.'"
Cole said he has responded to storms and fires around the state and in the West. Without power, he worries about people who are now without heat and light in their homes, fuel from gas stations and access to banks.
As Cole left, his teenage daughter expressed admiration for her father's service.
"She said she was proud of me for going to help these people," Cole said. "They're in need."
Cole's wife, Andrea, said she has the same message for her husband as he leaves each day to work with the high-voltage lines, and Thursday was no exception: Be safe.
"It's pretty scary work for them to head out, but they're all equipped to do the job," she said. "That's what they do."
The Coles will try to stay in touch by cellphone, so long as there is service and a place to charge them. With the linemen's heavy workload, Andrea Cole doesn't expect her husband will have many opportunities to call.
"There are a lot of people out of power, and there is a lot of work back there," she said. "They'll just stay as long as they're needed."
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