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  • FF death in MD

    Again it is with great sadness that news of another firefighter has lost their life. This time in MD after he collapsed after helping clean up after a tornado in College Park. I believe, and I will say again that this is only my opinion, that this death should have never happened. This firefighter was 78 years old! What was he doing there? Being a volunteer is a very noble thing to do, no matter what it is but I'm sorry, at this age, no company should allow this to happen. I have often taken classes @ Emmitsburg, MD National Fire Academy and have visited often w/ my son. I live in Pennslyvania and if you ever visit their, you will notice that PA has the largest slab of granite with names on it. Why? Because our state, let alone others have no standards on volunteer firefighting with regards to age limits, etc... The names will continue to be etched in stone until this topic of age in the volunteer fire service is scrutinized. Again, only my opinion.

  • #2
    If and when I'm 78 years old, I would much rather die on a fire scene at 78 than to sit at home and die in bed at 80 or even 85. That's my opinion. Maybe it was his too.

    Stay Safe

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    • #3
      Firemedic5, I had the same thought as you. There are many support functions that people that age and older can perform (often much better than anyone else), but suppression/rescue activity is not one of them. The likelihood of a rescuer becoming part of the problem rather than part of the solution increases exponentially at that advanced (for fire/EMS) age.

      Let the younger members learn from your wealth of experience, but in a classroom training environment.

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      • #4
        Okay and you tell them to give up their livelyhood!!

        We finally got a spry older gentleman to slow down by having the doc, who does our annual physicals, tell him he couldn't drive the hook and ladder anymore. No one in the dept. dare tell him that!

        This is their world and their livelyhood. Some of them have been doing it for 60 years!

        [ 09-25-2001: Message edited by: Diane ]
        "When I was young, my ambition was to be one of the people who made a difference in this world. My hope is to leave the world a little better for my having been there."
        -- Jim Henson (1936 - 1990)

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        • #5
          My neck of the woods, so I can comment.

          He was driving the light wagon from a mutual aid company. Big Deal. Don't tell me he's not qualified. And don't whine if he didn't have his EMT card (which I don't know).

          If I live to 78 (hope not), that's how I wanna go. Don't deny me. I'm more than halfway there fer chrissakes.....

          Have in your thoughts the MFRI asst director who lost 2 girls when their car flow OVER a 9 story dorm in that mess.

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          • #6
            It is sad that he died, but he died on duty. He was not bed ridden and sick.. Go him.

            My grandfather just died in June at the age of 97. He had 77 years of Active service in the fire department. he was banned from responding as the fire police when he was in his 80s because his hip was bad.

            Theres no reason to drive people out because of age. there will always be some place or job that they can preform. Obviously a 78 year old man shouldnt be running the line in PG County, but thats not what happened.. He could have been doing the ame thing in his own yard and died.. it just so happened he was on a call.. God Bless him...

            Primo Vincenzo
            "Cigarette Butts on the floor have more time than YOU!!"

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            • #7
              I am with you Grit....

              I my old dept we had/have a man that was stopped from driving at the age of 72 (about 10 years ago)... because of his health reasons... Until then...he was one of the best drivers we had..dependable...cautious...etc... He is still there and does everything from wash the trucks to roll hose. Comes out on major calls to the scene and helps...but does not actively fight fire. Take that away from him and you would kill him. He has been in that department now for over 65 years...
              09-11 .. 343 "All Gave Some..Some Gave ALL" God Bless..R.I.P.
              ------------------------------
              IACOJ Minister of Southern Comfort
              "Purple Hydrant" Recipient (3 Times)
              BMI Investigator
              ------------------------------
              The comments, opinions, and positions expressed here are mine. They are expressed respectfully, in the spirit of safety and progress. They do not reflect the opinions or positions of my employer or my department.

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              • #8
                Any bets on how long it takes Mongo to climb all over my hippocritical butt regarding the deaf firefighter?

                I'd still let the old guy drive before the deaf guy.

                Later bruthas

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                • #9
                  My thoughts and prayers to this brothers family....I hope I'm in the kind of shape that allows me to respond when I'm 78 (if I make it that long) if I can still perform, even if it's just driving a light wagon or utility. That's the way I wanna go...doing what I love.

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