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What got You started in the Fireservice?

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  • My father was the deputy chief and one weekend we got back to back to back calls, two of them required mutial aid because the department was short handed. I joined the next day. Figured, since I already knew all the guys and most of the equipment I may as well start early (I was 17 and our regs say you have to be 18 with consent, 19 without). I didn't get to go on the trucks unless not enough people showed up. If I was left behind, I manned the radio room.

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    • I was talked into joining our volunteer department after I told a member that I wanted to start EMT class and apply to a paid EMS provider. He said try it out as a vollie first and see if you like it. Well I made application to the department and somehow got roped into doing firefighting as well. Well 7 years later I finally got around to my EMT certification and got on the job for a local EMS provider and quit it soon afterwards. I found I was a much better firefighter than EMT. Now on the anniversary of my 9th year I am Captain of my company and couldn't be happier.

      ------------------
      Jeffrey D. Grey-Captain
      Roosevelt Fire District-Hyde Park,N.Y.

      [This message has been edited by RFD220 (edited 01-21-2001).]

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      • My father and several other family members were involved in the volunteer fire service before I was born. As I first recall My father was a 1st Lieutenant, my grandfather was the Asst. Chief, an uncle was 2nd Lieutenant and the tree goes on. So I guess firefighting is in the family blood. I began riding with the Ladies Auxiliary taking sandwiches and drinks to fires. As I got older I began to help roll and clean hose and put apparatus back into service (of course at that time there was no SCBA to clean and refill). I still remember the time that I ask what was in that green box in the back compartment of the pumper(as they were called then). I was told not to concern myself with that because we don't use it; it was a SCBA. Anyway, when I was 14 the department established an Explorer Program which was made up mostly of my brother and cusins, but there were a few others as well. As an explorer and after we received the appropriate training we were able to perform all duties except interior attack. When I turned 18 I became a regular member. I later joined the military where I was a firefighter both in the military and the community inwhich I lived and stayed after getting out of the military. For the sake of time; I worked I worked up through the ranks in the volunteer department to become an Asst. Chief. I later took a fulltime position as a firefighter in the Fort Bragg area. There I worked my way through the ranks to become the Fire Chief. I now have 27+ years in the fire service and have enjoyed the ability to help people in their time of need. Currently my brother is the leader arson investigator for a municipal department near our home town. most all of my cusins are still involved in our hometown department. I guess you could say "It's a Family Tradition"

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        • For my its a family thing.Both my grandfathers were members.Also my father and my uncle are members each holding positions either Lt or Capt at various times.My other uncle and myself were jrs together.Now being a member for past 5 years and being a lt for the past 3 years its been well worth it.I'm glad my family was in the fire service because if they weren't i probably woundn't be

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          • In 1996, my little rural community got hit harder than usual with wildfire. It happened every year, buy 1996 was real bad. While we were out helping fight fire with rakes and burlap bags (again), my dad said,”We need a fire department out here.”

            Well, being 19 and not knowing any better, I decided we’d just form a department up. Ten months later, we became operational. I joined because I started the fuss about the whole business. Five years later and I’m working at getting on full-time in the Tulsa area.

            Didn’t find out until after we were working on forming the department that my Grandfather had been a Captian in Germantown, TN. He’s the Chief of our volunteer department now.

            If you had told me six years ago that I would be a firefighter, I would have laughed. I had never considered it. The closest I had come to anything related to emergency services was 1) getting a CPR card and 2) being stopped for speeding by the Highway Patrol.
            Bryan Beall
            Silver City, Oklahoma USA

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            • Just fell into it

              I became interested in EMS in 1999 when my cousin and his fiancee were murdered by an intruder in their apartment in Columbus OH, and I knew some of the paramedics who reported to the scene to try to save them. But living in a big city where volly departments don't exist, I really couldn't contribute. So until I joined a service myself, I held those Paramedics in the highest regard, and prayed for them when they couldn't save Patrick and Loretta

              I finally became involved in the FD in 2000 at the encouragement of other FFs in my apartment complex when I moved to Wisconsin from Columbus,(we nickname it Firefighter Subsidized Housing...a 12 unit complex with 4 FFs). I originally just wanted to do EMS - being from Columbus and having friends in CFD, there was a "negative" air about women in the FD from those I knew. But in Madison, its just not like that. Since EMS school wasn't offered until later in the year, I went to Fire School and fell in love. Boy, would I have missed out if I didn't go to fire school!

              Firefighting and EMS put my life in perspective. I learned through helping others and teamwork that money and ritzy salaried jobs aren't what's important - its the richness of your life and feeling of contribution. In fact, I quit a very comfortable high salary job as a retail buyer, and went back to school for a second degree - nursing. I still work as a FF/EMT, and love it. Even my friends with CFD have provided me with a lot of encouragement, as my uncle and cousin (a FF in Las Vegas, and EMT in the Air Guard, respectively). I'm blessed to be with a fire department where continuous training is encouraged and rewarded, and to work with firefighters who genuinely care and pull for eachother. And the memory of Patrick helps me through every EMS call, and guided me through my first PNB - a 21 year-old who shot himself in the chest.

              Whether I work as a career FF/EMT or unpaid (I hope to be a burn trauma or ER nurse after graduation), as long as firefighting is in my life, it'll be complete.
              Spec. Krista M. Aukeman, United States Army

              Some day, in years to come, you will be wrestling with the great temptation, or trembling under the great sorrow of your life. But the real struggle is here, now, in these quiet weeks. Now it is being decided whether, in the day of your supreme sorrow or temptation, you shall miserably fail or gloriously conquer. Character cannot be made except by a steady, long continued process.
              - Phillips Brooks

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              • Lets see father,mother,grandfather,cousins,uncles,and neighbors were all involved. got intrested in '96 when i talked to guys who i knew and were explorers, so @ 14 y/o i signed up as an explorer, the day after i turned 18 got put on the dept, got my emt and here i am.
                Member IACOJ & IACOJ EMS Bureau
                New England FOOL
                "LEATHER FOREVER"
                As always these are strictly my own opinions and views

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                • well i first aswnerewd this post back on 9-26-2000
                  my father is a career firefighter with 20 years in his career dept. and 25 years in our volly dept.i was raised around the firedept. I took my first ride in a firetruck the day i came home from the hospital.they also saved my live 5 months later. thank god for cpr.
                  i am thrid generation as my grandfather helped start my dept.
                  i am know a full fledged firefighter. i have officialy 2 years of service (6 if you count time as a jouiner) in my dept.
                  i have fought fire, worked wrecks, done ems and to this day there is nothing i want to do more.
                  i am trying to get on full time. and will volly till the day i die.
                  2197 10-8
                  god bless and care for you all
                  2197 10-8<br />stay safe have fun stay healthy<br />
                  nc firefighter/emt-d
                  RFB-FTM

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                  • Several factors that influenced me, probally the little kid in me wanting to ride the fire truck was a big one. Other things such as the wanting to help people (I know it is a cliche'), the para-military way of life, the comradary.

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                    • Well, like many of the replies go, my dad was in the department when I was just a little guy. An early picture of me when I was 3 has me standing in the bucket of the new platform on the day it was housed. I started going to weekly training with my dad when I was about 12 and the rest is history, junior when I was 16, regular member at 21 and now will be celebrating my 17th year of service in May. Guess I thought it was a worthwhile thing to do. Still love it every single day!

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                      • Two reasons. First, my dad has been a volunteer firefighter for longer than I can remember. Second, I watched way too much Emergency! when I was a kid

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                        • Foreign Legion?????

                          Mine started when I was little watching Emergency and the fascination with the trucks. One summer, when I returned from Scout camp to find out my girlfriend had been dating someone else, I saw a sign that volunteers were wanted for the local department. I joined up, and since have completed two degrees in Fire Science, and now work as a full-time firefighter. I didn't know that it would lead me here when I started, but I wouldn't trade the friendships, commeraderie, and fun for anything!

                          Keep safe!
                          Discount Fire Helmets | IAFF 3303

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                          • My great- great grandfather was involved in starting the Rocky Hill Connecticut Fire Department in 1927. My great grandfather was cheif of this department from 1941-45. My grandfather was a member of Truck 1 of the same department. My 2 uncles and my dad all were on the Hebron Connecticut Fire Department. So I guess firefighting is just in my blood. I was taken to the fire station before I was taken home from the hospital when I was born. I started with the Plaistow New Hampshire Fire Explorer Post when I was 15. It has since disbanded and now I'm an explorer in Danville New Hampshire. After I graduate from college I'm going to get a full time job as a fire fighter.

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                            • My Dad was a Forest Ranger for the Virginia Department of Forestry and also a volunteer. Until he had his heart attack we volunteered together. I actually started at age 13. Was also a career firefighter. Now my son is volunteering.
                              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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