1. #1
    Junior Member

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    Jul 2001
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    Austin, TX
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    Default When an injury effects your firefighting career.

    I am 33 years old and have been in the fire service since April 96. I got hired on a dept. in Oct.98. Before getting hired, I had injured my back in a wake boarding accident(like water skiing for those who dont know). I passed the physical agility test with a hampering pain, barely. Anyway, my pain went undiagnosed for approx. a year when I had an MRI and finally found out I had a herniated disk. After having surgery in June 2000, a year later still having pain everyday, yet another docter found a tear in the disk of L4-L5. The 1st surgery fused the disk of L5-S1. I'm having my second surgery Aug 2001 with another fusion anteriorly and rods & screws posteriorly. I miss doing my job, seeing that I have been with Admin for over a year now. I am trying to find other fire service members who have had my kind of pain, depression, surgerys, etc. and are doing better now, doing thier jobs and feeling better. Or are they having to move on to other careers and lifestlyes. This has been a painful and rough road. Only God has gotten me this far. I look forward to hearing from some of you. God Bless ALL of you and especially those who are dealing with constant pain. In Christ,

    David <0>><

  2. #2
    MembersZone Subscriber
    UTFFEMT's Avatar
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    Nov 1999
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    Park City, Utah
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    1,510

    Default

    I was injured pretty bad in 1985, I had surgary and soon after was told that I needed to find another career. I was only a firefighter for 2 years at this time.(1983)I was not going to be denied, I worked very hard to get better and after 18 years, am still going strong in the Fire Service on the floor.

    I have a friend and recent co-worker whom went thru a recent back problem and has had to take an early retirement. He then was run over a couple of weeks ago and lost one of his legs and lots of other complications, he has been offered a postion as an instructor at the Fire Academy and he is very excited about that opportunity. Although it is not in operations, he still gets to maintain his connection with the Emergency Services and is very grateful for that.

    I guess the moral of the story is that it depends on each persons situation and how one approaches the challenges we all face. Remember, life is not over just because the jobs ends, you are just starting a new chapter in life.

    Good luck, and keep your spirits high
    Front line since 1983 and still going strong

  3. #3
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    FireCapt1951retired's Avatar
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    Nov 2000
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    David,

    Never give up on trying to return. Over the last 28+ years I have had numerous surgeries, some similar to yours. I have 3 fused disks C-3, C-4 and C-5 along with the rod and screws in my neck. I've had my back fractured twice and both rotator cuffs removed, All thats left is to get my knees repaired.

    Keep up with a physical therapy regiment and eventually things will turn out alright. I still have problems with my back and neck, especially in colder weather but attitude will help you prevail. Good luck and don't give up.

  4. #4
    Senior Member

    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Location
    Daytona Beach, FL, US
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    Default

    Don't give up on returning to duty. Last year a friend of mine, Bill Henry, from Volusia County Fire Service, Florida, last part of his leg in a motorcycle accident. Last week he took his physical agility test and returned to duty at Station 21. Stay open minded to ALL options, accupunture, Tai Chi, etc. The road is hard, but, you aren't alone. Good luck.

    Stay safe
    Bless all of our Fallen Brothers and Sisters. You will not be forgotten

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