Thread: How long, where, and why?
09-14-2000, 07:51 AM #1smokeeater51Firehouse.com Guest
How long, where, and why?
I am always curious as to how and why people enter into the emergency services. I'm interested to hear how you got into it, how long you have been doing it, where you are, and why. As far as I am concerned, I am a third generation firefighter. I've been in the volunteer service since 1991, and am currently a lieutenant/EMT-B in the town of Rollinsford NH. I do it because of the extreme satisfaction I get when I know that I have helped someone, no matter how small the problem.
I look forward to the replies that I hope this generates.
Take care, stay safe, & stay low!
Lt. M. Spinney
Rollinsford Fire & Rescue
09-14-2000, 09:02 AM #2FireRebelFirehouse.com Guest
I can write a book on why I have wanted to be a firefighter, love of the job, helping the community, blah, blah, blah....there is not one thing I can put my finger on saying this reason more than any other has lead me this way...following my Father's footsteps, maybe...who knows, I am a EMT-I, Volunteer firefighter for over 5 years, and currently trying like heck to get hired as a career firefighter here in the heartland of this great country....stay safe!
09-14-2000, 09:57 AM #3jalbrittFirehouse.com Guest
jalbritt is my E-Mail at work code. John H. Albritton is my full name. Started with the fire service in Sarasota County, Florida as a Forest Ranger in Fire Control with the state of Florida in 1966 after graduating from high school. I was assigned to a bulldozer fire plow unit. I worked there four years and hired on with a local fire department the South Trail Fire District Sarasota Fla, in 1970. Over the last 30 yrs the dept. has merged 5 times, since 1995 we have been the Sarasota County Fire Department, including the City of Sarasota. 460 total staff 20 fire stations 25 ALS rescues 20 fire engines, 2 ladders, Special Ops Unit( hazmat,hi-angle rescue,confined space rescue),
1 Fire/Rescue Boat(a 26ft WhalerW/twin 200s & 750 GPM fire pump) We also have Emergency Management and just took on the Gulf Beach Life Guards. I worked through the ranks LT,Capt,Dep/Chief and the last five years Fire Chief and Executive Director. I am now retiring. A new Fire Chief and Executive Director have been appointed from with in the department and I am transiting out. I have always loved public service and will stay involved in Metro Fire Chiefs,NFPA, and Florida Fire Chiefs. I enjoy this forum also
09-14-2000, 01:07 PM #4morrissFirehouse.com Guest
Standard reasons. Second generation FF along with my brother. Have been a volunteer for 18 years. Currently a Lieutenant EMT-B, past Captain-training officer. Located in Central Virginia.
09-14-2000, 07:42 PM #5nsfirechapFirehouse.com Guest
The Air Force made the decision for me in 1977, although as the Grandson of a career firefighter in Bayonne New Jersey I gave no thought to doing the job. But eventually grew to love it. When I retired in 97, I couldn't stay away from it-you can take the boy out of the fire service but not the fire service out of the boy!!!!! It's a priveledge and an honor, and a calling, to serve.
Chaplain Jeff Turkel
North Star VFD
North Pole, Alaska
09-14-2000, 07:54 PM #6Letona_Fire_26Firehouse.com Guest
I am a Volunteer for the state of Arkansas. I have been on the job for 2 years.
The reason I joined was because it felt like the right thing to do.
09-14-2000, 08:33 PM #7Dr. LawFirehouse.com Guest
Duh, Ah likes the purty lites and lowd sireens, uh huh and da purty shiny red trucks.
Okay, seriously. Beats me why. I had wanted to try it for a while, but never quite got into it. Had been a police officer previously, and then had inspirations to become a lawyer, wearing both the white hats of prosecution and defense. Yes, neither one of them is a good start in the FF direction, but then one day one of the guys comes to my office and tells me that I was put on the local department (all vollyFF) and that was that. I think some of them thought they could get out of traffic tickets :-) but whatever the reason, I have been proud to be one for the ten years since then.
09-16-2000, 12:00 AM #8DianeFirehouse.com Guest
How long: 10 years if I count my year as an Explorer.
Where: A volunteer dept. on the north shore of Long Island.
Why: I ask myself that question often. Was it and is it worth all the grief I've been through...Maybe if I was in a larger dept. that gave a damn about the community instead of how much the party and social budgets should be I would feel different. And maybe if I had more women to associate it with it would be better......I won't live on Long Island for ever, so I hang in there.
09-16-2000, 04:40 PM #9Aerial 131Firehouse.com Guest
Started emergency work as a correctional officer Idaho, moved to police work (Boise PD), found not my cup of tea (so I thought), moved to nuclear security at Hanford, joined a volunteer department locally (20 years now) on a dare mind you, and left security to go career with Hanford Fire (8 years ago). Still a volunteer!
Love the job, the challenges and now and then a fire or two. Never dull and always something to do. Family knows I am happy and that is all that counts!
09-16-2000, 05:11 PM #10firefly1361Firehouse.com Guest
Just like everyone else, Second generation even though its skipped a couple to get to me.(My Great-Grandfather was a Baltimore City career man). I've been in for two years and I love it. I'm also trying to get into a career dept. I wouldnt trade this profession for anything else in the world.
Heather Helm ff/emt-b
Gamber and Community Fire Co.
Carroll County Co.13
09-17-2000, 12:30 PM #11Firefighter2000Firehouse.com Guest
I am not a firefighter but will be one as soon as I am old enough. I wanted to become a firefighter ever since I lost my brother who died in the line of duty in a house fire a few years back. He and I were really close and he loved the fire dept. and I do to. My mother on the other hand hates it and will all but die before she see's her daughter become a firefighter. Plus the fact to know that I will help someone always makes me smile. just my 2 cents
Firefighters America's Hero's
09-20-2000, 03:42 AM #12NathanFirehouse.com Guest
11 years as a vol. firefighter (1989) with the New South Wales Rural Fire Service (currently Deputy Captain at Narara (Gosford City) and Rural Fire Instructor for Gosford City and member of Gosford City RFS' Remote Area Fire Team)
6 years as a career firefighter (1994) with the New South Wales Fire Brigades, currently at 75 Stn Berowra (far northern outskirts of Sydney). Been a rescue firefighter since 1997.
Joined the RFS 'cause my father was a vol. since 1977, and joined the NSWFB after a word with my uncle (also a career F/F). Best job in the world!! Great to know that you actually make a difference.
[This message has been edited by Nathan (edited September 20, 2000).]
09-20-2000, 08:27 AM #13Les.HFirehouse.com Guest
I always wanted to be a firefighter from my school days. Waited until I was 25 before joining the Air Force Department Fire Service and was based at Farnborough, home of the International Air Shows. Now a Station Commander in the county of Berkshire (near London). Have now served a total of 22 years and would not exchange any of them. Now transposing into Fire Safety as a Fire Risk Adviser.
Still fighting 'Mr Fire' on a daily basis. Why? Because I like helping people in an emergency situation, the comaradeship from my fellow crew members and the money is nice.
Kindest regards & keep safe,
09-20-2000, 02:16 PM #14East Haddam#1firefighterFirehouse.com Guest
I never thought about being a firefighter until a couple of years ago when I was 17.
At the time I was working with a member of the East Haddam Volunteer Fire Department which is the second biggest town in Connecticut landwise not population wise. We have a population of around 7500 people. My Grandfather was a full-time New Britain, Connecticut firefighter for more than 30 years. He was a Lt and then promoted to Captain. He held that position until he retired in 1980.
Anyways I ask my co-worker/friend to get me a application to the fire department. I would become a Junior member because high school students can only be juniors. I filled it out and 8 months later after being screened and getting my physical I was sworn in.
I have been a member for 13 months now and I I have enjoyed every minute of it. I was a junior member for 11 months and I was sworn in as a senior member in July. I became Connecticut State certified as Fire Fighter one in May. The fire service has been very good to me in the 13 months that I have been in it.
I enjoy helping my fellow citizens of East Haddam during their time of need. It makes me feel good when I do help and the only way that I could think of that would allow me to help out was to join the F.D., so I did. In my first year I was one of the most active members of the department, even though juniors arent required to make a quota to stay a member. The F.D. has allowed me to meet so many more people in my small town and I am fortunate for that. If at all possible I would love to be a career firefighter and I know that my age is a good time to start looking for a position. The only problem is, is that there is only a handful of paid departments in Connecticut and demand for the positions if any, are highly sought after and competetive.
Well all that I can say is that the Fire Service is great for a person's character and it just makes you a much better person in life.
East Haddam F.D.
East Haddam Connecticut
[This message has been edited by East Haddam#1firefighter (edited September 20, 2000).]
09-20-2000, 03:13 PM #15rojaigFirehouse.com Guest
How long: 18 months
Not really sure, I liked the thought of helping people, I like the adrenalin rush when the alarm goes off, I am really close to the people in my platoon and the who dept in general. Friends were vollies in Alberta when I lived there so they first started my renewed interest. I have a cousin in Bayonne NJ who was Chief (I think) and he gave me an old leather helmet years ago - I guess it is just in my blood. Engineer (Industrial) by necessity; Firefighter by heart
09-20-2000, 04:02 PM #16SRVFD2Firehouse.com Guest
There had been several fires in our community, and the closest f.d. to us was 8 mile away. We kept waiting for someone to start a department in our community, but finally realized if it was going to be done, we'd have to do it. 9 1/2 years later we are still amazed at how this project brought the community together. We have 18 dedicated volunteers, and are located in beautiful Western KY.
09-21-2000, 02:44 AM #17caza_28Firehouse.com Guest
i have been in vol fire fighter for 6 mos. fire fighter in the navy for 3 yrs. i wanted to do something for my community, and well i enjoy doing this, and well never no regrets.
09-22-2000, 01:01 AM #18Kafbfire23Firehouse.com Guest
My name is Ed Schwartz Jr and I have been a firefighter for four years two at a fairly busy volunteer fire company in Maryland. Then I went in to the Air Force as a firefighter and life hasn't been the same since. Instead of running working fires at least once a month now i am lucky if I get one once a year. I became a firefighter for a number of reasons. Number one I came from a long line of firefighters and always remember my family getting together and talking about fires and neat stuff like that. Number two my dad is extremelt big into collecting fire equipmentr and toys and I picked up the habit from him. I also love the work. I took Emergency services tech in Vo tech in High school and it was all over with from then on. My parents thought I ran away because I would sleep at the firehouse when I could and leave for any calls that I could get to. Thanks See ya
09-27-2000, 05:33 AM #19macffFirehouse.com Guest
I've been a volunteer firefighter for about 14 years. The last two with the Aboite Twp. Vol. Fire Dept., which is just southwest of Ft. Wayne, IN. I grew up in the fire service since I was 5, at one time both parents where on the dept. I strongly believe that training is the backbone of the fire service.
May the Lord watch over us and protect us!
09-27-2000, 10:27 AM #20F52 WestsideFirehouse.com Guest
How long?- 12 years P.O.C. and about 6 mos
Why? - Not really sure. I don't think it was the lights and sirens. But I was the kid who used to run down to the corner to watch the trucks go by. When I was old enough to ride my bike across the streets, I would follow the trucks to the scene and watch them. I guess I just wanted to be part of the helping of people.
Eddie C. - a.k.a - PTFD21
"Doin' it for lives n' property"
09-28-2000, 12:28 AM #21truckie1794Firehouse.com Guest
With my dad being a volunteer, I grew up in the firehouse and couldn't wait to join. That was 15 years ago with the Baldwin FD on the south shore of Long Island. Since then I've been with 2 departments in Texas, Kingwood and Porter.
I'm 3rd generation, with a grandfather, great uncle & uncle in the Freeport FD, sister and 2 brother-in-laws with Baldwin, uncle in Uniondale, and an uncle & 2 cousins in Dix Hills (all Long Island, NY). Also have a 2nd cousin paid in Linden, NJ.
I love this job!
09-29-2000, 10:24 AM #22firefighter812Firehouse.com Guest
HI, THE REASON I BECAME A FIREFIGHTER IS BASICALLY BECAUSE WHEN I WAS A KID. I REMEMBER WATCJING THE SHOW EMERGENCY AS A KID AND I'M SURE THAT MOST OF YOU ALL REMEMBER THAT SHOW TOO. THEY SAY THAT 85% OF THE FIREFIGHTER'S/EMT'S OF TODAY HAVE WATCHED THAT SHOW AS A CHILD AND THAT SHOW ALONE WAS A GREAT INSPIRATION TO US ALL. JUST LIKE CHIPS, 87% OF POLICE OFFICERS TODAY HAVE WATCHED THAT SHOW AND NOW ARE COPS. I ALWAYS WANTED TO HELP PEOPLE AND ALWAYS ENJOYED THE EXTREME FEELING OF FIGHTING FIRE WHEN I FIRST ENTERED MY FIRST LIVE BURN. I WAS ALIVE WHEN I SEEN HOW THE FALMES ACTUALLY WORKED AROUND IN THE ROOM. NOT A GREAT FEELING WHEN THE HEAT GETS INTENSE THOUGH. SO, THAT'S THE REASON I HAVE CHOSEN TO DO FIREFIGHTING.
10-01-2000, 10:35 PM #23Louis Molino SrFirehouse.com Guest
OK the guys in my station hate when I say this but I'm here at the age of 36. Having been a volunteer and career firefighter and EMT since I was 16 and still doing it strong as ever thanks to Johnny and Roy. Roy actually.
One Saturday night in 1972 this little 7-year-old listens to Roy explains to Johnny why Johnny should become a paramedic and bang I wanted to be a firefighter paramedic. Some 29 year later I might just still go to paramedic school but that will have to wait for a bit more time and money but I have never looked back.
24/7/365 plain and simple.
Louis N. Molino, Sr., CET
New Jersey, a peninsula trying to be an island
The opinions expressed here are my own, and therefore do not reflect the opinions of any organization(s) that I may be affiliated with in any way.
10-01-2000, 11:01 PM #24braggcaptFirehouse.com Guest
While still in High School (and goofing off entirely too much) a friend's father introduced me to the junior firefighter program at our local volunteer department. I think he saw that I was in danger of traveling down the wrong path. I was hooked immediately and have been in the fire service ever since. I couldn't imagine working a 9-5 job. And while 26 years have passed I still love riding fire apparatus. I must admit, however, that those middle of the night calls are a little harder now.
James F. Johnson
Fort Bragg Fire Dept
10-02-2000, 01:39 AM #25FFBillFirehouse.com Guest
Always wanted to be a firefighter since I was young. Started as a Junior in 1988 and was hooked from day one.
Volunteer for a small Northern CA Dept. for 12 years and occupied FF, Eng., Captain and now a Dep. Chief position (Training Chief).
Career for the past 4.5 years in Northern CA and promoted to FF2 about a year ago.
I love this job!!!
Fight Fire Agressivly but Provide for Safety First!
[This message has been edited by FFBill (edited October 02, 2000).]
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