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  • getting old

    i will be the big 50 this month. i am starting to dread it as i realize that my life is over half over. Realty has set in and i know that i can not do some of the things that i used to do as a firefighter. i have been a volunteer almost 27 years and i wonder if it is time to hang it up. i still make a contribution to the dept in other ways than firefighting. i still help out with fundraisers and some other ways. am i taking a spot that could be used by someone more active? any body else out there with thoughts like these?

  • #2
    Hell, 50 ain't old! You are only as old as you let yourself think about it. Sure, we can't keep up with the 20somethings in speed and power, but we do have the upper hand in technique and the way we pace ourselves . Toe-to-toe, see who lasts longer . Now, toe-to-toe, see who recoups fastest . It ain't easy being a dinosaur. You can still do the things you used to, only difference is that you sit back and contemplate the outcome. Don't want to become fossil-fuel to fast, do ya?

    Hang it up? I think not. You would be putting too much work on Otto, and we both know how busy he is . As long as you are filling the spot and making a contribution, you are needed!! Black balloons and birthday cakes are not the end of the party, just the start of another verse.

    Anyhows, Happy 50th......And many more!!
    Peace,
    TROLL

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    • #3
      Seriously, your worried about turning 50? Think about the fun you'd miss quitting. All the friends you've gained. You may not be able to continue to enter a burning building, but what about drive? A Chief can be over 50, put all that experiance to good use...and if your in the shape, hell, you can keep going in and kicking ***
      Buster

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      • #4
        Hi Larry-

        I'm certainly not in your shoes. But as a newer firefighter, I look to people like you with real experience. In fact, when I joined my first department, I stuck to a 50-something captian like glue. If he stopped - I would have run right up his you-know-what. That man taught me more than anyone. And it would sadden me greatly if he left because he wanted some newer guy to come in. Experience can't be replaced!

        However, if your body is telling you to stop, that's something to listen to. Your wisdom will always be a benefit to your department, and if you were on my department, I'd hate to see you hurt - or worse - because of what your body is saying hang it up. Then you would contribute less to future firefighters other than your legacy. If you need to stop for health reasons - do more than sell raffle tickets!!! Go to drill, and teach us new punks how to run the show!!!

        But, it's heart over head in this job (if it was the other way around, would we even go into a fire? ) What do you want to do?

        Heck, 50 aint old. Unless you've heard of the classic rock/orchestra group ELO (sorry, if you're reading this, Mongo - "I couldn't resist!) Then you're a fossil

        Best of luck to you - with your decision and your future.
        We're all in this together. FDNY 9-11-01

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        • #5
          Stick in as long as you want and can. We use to have a couple of 69 year-old retired officers still driving our trucks until our tyrant ex-chief forced them out. We still have 50+ year old members and officers and not one person thinks that they are too old to do what they do. Plus, your experiences will help the new generation of FF's learn.
          IACOJ Agitator
          Fightin' Da Man Since '78!

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          • #6
            Your Killing Me Larry!!!!!!

            50 old!!!! Hell no! You're just now beginning to understand what this job is all about. Brain over braun, anytime!

            I'm over 50....my Engineer is 64 and my FF is 45. Hell, we're known as the "Greybeards" and proud of it. We kick ***!

            Larry, you're getting melancholy on us! Hang in there. You got plenty to offer.

            When I'm feeling that way, I put on a good 33 1/3 album on the HiFi (you know...like the Moody Blues or something), open up a can of "Ensure", chug it down, put on a new pair of "Depends" and get back to work. Makes me feel 30 years younger.

            So, don't give up now, there's still plenty of room for us old dinosaur in this New Age Fire Service!

            [ 07-05-2001: Message edited by: Icerader ]
            Be Proud, Be Courageous, Be Humble.
            Be safe!
            Captain Ice

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            • #7
              Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha !!!!!

              Hey Larry, Thanks for the laugh kid !!

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              • #8
                I can remember when the buzzphrase was don't trust anyone over 30"...then I turned 30...it wasn't so bad.

                Then I turned 40..and I was in just as good if not better condition than I was at the age of 30.

                I'm not 50 yet...I have a couple years to go. I eat right, work out, take long walks with the dogs, ride my mountain bike and try to avoid getting stressed over the little things (I donated blood today, my pulse was 72, my BP was 110/80, temp was 95.3...cool and unstressed!) My only concession to the aging process was the need for reading glasses and that was just 6 months ago. If you think young, stay active and keep on learning...you won't have a problem.

                [ 07-06-2001: Message edited by: Captain Gonzo ]
                ‎"The education of a firefighter and the continued education of a firefighter is what makes "real" firefighters. Continuous skill development is the core of progressive firefighting. We learn by doing and doing it again and again, both on the training ground and the fireground."
                Lt. Ray McCormack, FDNY

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                • #9
                  Larry, there are two excellent FF's and medics on my department. One is 76, the other is 84. You've got a long way to go, buddy.
                  Mike

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                  • #10
                    Would you rather be young and fast or old and treachorous. 50 is not old like the above response we have a medic in the area that is in his 80's. Age and wisdom have many advantages, think of all the rooks you can mess with.
                    the truth never hides for long

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                    • #11
                      40 was the "big one" for me. The grey hairs were taking over the dark ones, the dry skin was beginning to look like snake skin, and those darn wrinkles. I became intimate friends with Ms. Clairol and Mary Kay. It was when I turned 45 that I realized I had finally "growed up". I could do as I darn well pleased, I didn't have to answer to anyone. If you liked me, fine. If you didn't, that was fine too. I had a right to my opinion, if you agreed, good. If you didn't be prepared for a good argument. I finally learned It was my life, and I could run it the way I was comfortable.
                      I haven't turned 50 yet, but knocking on the doors (hard), and although I can't run as fast as I could 10 years ago, and I have trouble getting up and down (bad knees), I've found that my mind works just fine. It's nice to be able to sit and say "let me tell you how to do it".
                      As far as you taking up a space someone else could fill, have you ever seen a volunteer department that had too many volunteers? As long as the mind works give them the benefit of your experience.
                      BTW: when I turned 30, my brother gave me a card that said, "the best 10 years of your life are between the ages of

                      29 and 30." Happy Birthday

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                      • #12
                        Yeah, I know. When we were young it was, "popping pills and smokin' joints"

                        Now it's just popping joints.

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                        • #13
                          Happy Birthday!!!!

                          Don't think of yourself as old, just someone who's seen alot.
                          Opinions stated are mine only and do not reflect those of my companies.

                          FTM-PTB-EGH-RFB-KTF

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                          • #14
                            I turned 40 today... and I started feeling it when I was 35!!! Of course it didn't help that I was almost killed by a drunk driver in 1983 in a car accident. That left me with arthritus in several joints. So far, adrenalin seems to have taken care of that on the fire ground... but at the end of this summer, I plan to bite to bullet and see if the doctor can do anything to help alleviate the pain.
                            Richard Nester
                            Orrville (OH) Fire Dept.

                            "People don't care what you know... until they know that you care." - Scott Bolleter

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                            • #15
                              Hehehe hey Icerader, whats your fravite Ensure? Love that double chocolate.
                              I'm a 47 year old Rookie!!!! I worked in a paided dept for over 12 years until the poltics and a job offer in a new Steel Mill (at 3 times the money) took me away. 11 years later I joined my Townships Volunteer Fire Dept. That was 3 months ago and boy am I lost.
                              ...Go to rehab???? I just want another full air tank!
                              ... Turn on my what????? Pass Device??????
                              ... Cool a Nomex Hood, does the Fire Dept sponser a Race Car??????
                              ... 2 in, 2 out????? Sounds kind of kinky!!
                              ... You'll ever hear of 3/4 boots?????

                              So live life to the fullest, boy am I having fun. They gave me lots of stuff to play with and them even let me drive once in awhile
                              Old School...Learning New Tricks
                              http://members.home.net/dly135/welcome.htm

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