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  1. #1
    Sr. Information Officer NJFFSA16's Avatar
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    Post Wichita FF's getting "heat" from "Tonight Show" stunt

    WICHITA, Kan. (AP) - Three Wichita firefighters have caused a
    stir within the department after a stunt on a national late-night
    talk show in which one set his chest hair on fire.
    Now, their actions are under review.
    Even the local firefighters union president calls the July 10
    gag, performed before millions of late-night viewers of "The
    Tonight Show with Jay Leno", an "irresponsible act" because it
    contradicts what firefighters preach.
    "We don't encourage our kids to do dangerous stunts," said
    Wichita fire Capt. Doug Pickard, president of the International
    Association of Firefighters, Local 135. "What kind of message did
    we send them?"
    On Friday, one of the firefighters defended the stunt. Lt. Mike
    Corns said because it was a late-night show, the firefighters
    thought children wouldn't see the skit.
    Corns said they took precautions on stage and followed local
    fire regulations. They also tried to represent themselves only as
    private citizens, not members of the Fire Department.
    "It's supposed to be three crazy guys to entertain people," he
    said. All three were off-duty.
    Leno introduced the stunt with the warning: "Remember, don't
    try this at home." Then firefighter Lloyd Cox ignited the hairiest
    part of his chest with a wand-type lighter. The hair flamed for a
    few seconds, then he patted it out. At the same time, Corns and
    firefighter Dave Shonka shot their fire extinguishers at him.
    Shonka declined to comment, and Cox could not be reached.
    The Wichita Fire Department is reviewing the incident, Chief
    Larry Garcia said Friday. But he would not discuss any possible
    discipline against the firefighters.
    Garcia did not mince words about the stunt, calling it
    "idiotic, at the very best." He viewed a tape of the episode
    after it aired.
    Garcia also accused Leno, the host of the late-night talk show,
    of poor judgment for allowing such a skit. A spokeswoman for Leno's
    publicist declined comment.
    Corns said he and the other two firefighters did not want to
    present themselves as firefighters while on the show, only as
    entertainers, he said. They even declined to wear firefighter
    equipment, though urged to by the show's staff, Corns said.
    But in light banter with Leno, Cox said he was a firefighter
    from Wichita.
    The three did take precautions, Corns said.
    Cox used a fire-retardant gel on part of his chest. Although the
    two firefighters shot the fire extinguishers, "it was more for
    show" than necessity, Corns said. He said Cox wasn't injured.
    Corns defended the firefighters' reputations.
    "They've saved people's lives, and they've put out extremely
    difficult fires."
    The three friends traveled to Los Angeles at the show's expense,
    Corns said.
    Although disappointed with the stunt, Garcia also had some
    praise for the three, saying they are among some of the
    better-skilled firefighters in the department, especially because
    of their paramedic training.
    The stunt should not reflect on the Fire Department, but the
    department suffers some because the three are members, Garcia said.
    "They brought shame to themselves, and we're included in
    that."

    (Copyright 2003 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)
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  2. #2
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    I don't really care if they were FF or not. This was stupid and dangerous. Halk of these people who are imitating the jackass stuff are adults.
    Garcia also accused Leno, the host of the late-night talk show,
    At least someone sees the whole picture.
    Garcia also had some praise for the three, saying they are among some of the better-skilled firefighters in the department, especially because of their paramedic training.
    This is frightening. Their skills apparently didn't include any training in fire prevention or public fire education.

  3. #3
    MembersZone Subscriber EFD840's Avatar
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    They also tried to represent themselves only as private citizens, not members of the Fire Department. "It's supposed to be three crazy guys to entertain people," he said. All three were off-duty.
    This quote speaks volumes. Folks, like it or not once we put on the uniform the rules change. When it comes to representing the fire service and our department, we're never off duty.

  4. #4
    MembersZone Subscriber MalahatTwo7's Avatar
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    Originally posted by EFD840
    When it comes to representing the fire service and our department, we're never off duty.
    Originally posted by NJFFSA16
    The Wichita Fire Department is reviewing the incident, Chief
    Larry Garcia said Friday. But he would not discuss any possible
    discipline against the firefighters. Garcia did not mince words about the stunt, calling it "idiotic, at the very best."
    Hmm never "off duty" in the eyes of the public, and "idiotic at the very best": yep that about sums it up. It matters not that they refused to state they were firefighters, there were people both in the audience and at home who knew those men, and knew that they were firefighters. Word of mouth is a very powerful tool, when used correctly, but can be equally damaging when used incorrectly. This is definitely one of those "incorrect application of a good tool" situations.
    If you don't do it RIGHT today, when will you have time to do it over? (Hall of Fame basketball player/coach John Wooden)

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    Get it up. Get it on. Get it done!

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    IACOJ member: Cheers, Play safe y'all.

  5. #5
    Forum Member DeputyChiefGonzo's Avatar
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    two words come to mind....

    Freakin' MORONS!!!
    Last edited by CaptainGonzo; 03-27-2008 at 02:25 PM.
    ‎"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

  6. #6
    MembersZone Subscriber Pizan1's Avatar
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    Angry Time for a reality check

    Hey what you do on your time off is your business. So, I guess because people know I am a firefighter I should not sit in the local tavern and enjoy a pop or two, because it reflects bad upon me and the Fire service. Or I guess I should not cuss when I shank my next golf shot, because the guy next hole over knows me as a firefighter. I am shocked that brothers would take this type of stand against fellow brothers. It was a gag and an act, an act of entertainment. I do not care if they were firefighters, paramedics, doctors, lawyer, or clergymen. What I do out of uniform, as long as it falls inside the law, it is my business. If I want to appear on the Jay Leno and set my balls on fire its my business, not yours and definitely not my employers. As long as they did not say hey were Moe, Larry, and Curly from the Wichita, KS FD and were going to set our friend on fire. There is not a thing their employer can do about it, its not like they were in uniform, or using department property. So, what did they do wrong? NOTHING! Time for some people to take a reality check and MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS!!!!

    This is frightening. Their skills apparently didn't include any training in fire prevention or public fire education.
    What? Get a life. Nobody can tell anybody how to live their life. It goes to the old adage you do not like it? Do not eat it. Do not like the way it looks? Do not look at it. Do not like what I am saying? DO NOT LISTEN!

    I support these guys 100% and I am going to let them know it. Do not throw stones when you live in a glass house, do not judge another person till you walked a mile in their shoes.

  7. #7
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    Ill second that Gonzo, and add that maybe we are just being too hard on these guys. Yep, thats what I said, we're being too hard on them. I mean come on it aint easy being stupid.
    Proud member of the IACOJ
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    *** These are my opinions, they do not in any way reflect those of my department.***

  8. #8
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    Default Re: Time for a reality check

    Originally posted by Pizan1
    Hey what you do on your time off is your business. So, I guess because people know I am a firefighter I should not sit in the local tavern and enjoy a pop or two, because it reflects bad upon me and the Fire service. Or I guess I should not cuss when I shank my next golf shot, because the guy next hole over knows me as a firefighter. I am shocked that brothers would take this type of stand against fellow brothers. It was a gag and an act, an act of entertainment. I do not care if they were firefighters, paramedics, doctors, lawyer, or clergymen. What I do out of uniform, as long as it falls inside the law, it is my business. If I want to appear on the Jay Leno and set my balls on fire its my business, not yours and definitely not my employers. As long as they did not say hey were Moe, Larry, and Curly from the Wichita, KS FD and were going to set our friend on fire. There is not a thing their employer can do about it, its not like they were in uniform, or using department property. So, what did they do wrong? NOTHING! Time for some people to take a reality check and MIND YOUR OWN BUSINESS!!!!



    What? Get a life. Nobody can tell anybody how to live their life. It goes to the old adage you do not like it? Do not eat it. Do not like the way it looks? Do not look at it. Do not like what I am saying? DO NOT LISTEN!

    I support these guys 100% and I am going to let them know it. Do not throw stones when you live in a glass house, do not judge another person till you walked a mile in their shoes.
    Your "back the brothers at all costs", crap is old and tired. I am a union member. I don't drink the union Kool-aid. If a brother makes a mistake, I will back him. If he does something stupid that embarrases the department and the profession, I am not going to sit on my hands and do nothing.

    Fire preventio is a joke in most departments. It receives a pittanc eof the budget and is historically grossly understaffed. Why? Because of the macho BS attitudes of brain dead fire fighters like these idiots.

    You let them know you are with them. But, do me a favor, let them know, also, that there are whole lot of people who think they are morons.

  9. #9
    MembersZone Subscriber Pizan1's Avatar
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    Angry Still Amazed

    You let them know you are with them. But, do me a favor, let them know, also, that there are whole lot of people who think they are morons.
    What is matter with you people? I tell you; thank god I am not in the trenches with you as my brothers keepers. This has nothing to do with Fire Prevention and this has nothing to do with the Fire Service period. These were three guys who went on the Tonight Show to entertain ADULTS! If your kids are up this late in the summer or not watching Jay Leno, then I question your ability to be a good parent. Then I guess we should all be all over Actor Steve Buscemi who WAS a FDNY brother, because he made a movie were a lunatic Mexican goes around shooting up Mexico looking for Buchos. Right. Yeah thatís what I thought, HYPOCRITES. I am done. I am appalled.
    I am Union FF, whippy do da, like that means something, please. I am also a an Officer, and I tell you what, if I was a WFD member, officer, or Union clown, I'd say roll the dice Chief Garcia and I will kick your *** in the grievance procedure and I will then be suing the crap out of you and the City, especially since I am a card carrying member of an AFL-CIO, and I am entitled to my rights. Regardless of what other out of touch, old FF's think. They did nothing wrong, so I guess we will all agree to disagree.

  10. #10
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    I don't agree with Pizan1's argumentative attitude, but I do agree with some of his opinions. I think that these guys were just going on the show to entertain adults. Adults can make their own decisions as to what they want to do. If they want to set themselves on fire, then they are allowed to do it, even if it is stupid. These guys were in no way representing the fire service at all, they didn't wear fire t-shirts, didn't bring a truck to the show, and didn't use company funds to get them to the show. There shouldn't be anything that WFD can do to them without that. They may be idiots for setting each other on fire, and they reflect bad on themselves, but they in no way hurt the fire service, that is until the fire department made a big deal about it and blew it completely out of proportion. Now it's a huge thing and everybody is talking about it, just like the whole "stripper on a truck" thing near my area. That was misuse of a department vehicle, but they could have been disciplined quietly instead of publicizing the crap out of it and plastering the picture all over newspapers and TV screens. Now that this is getting out of hand, the WFD WILL actually have a PR nightmare, if they would have just let it go, since it didn't hurt anyone, nobody would be the wiser.

  11. #11
    MembersZone Subscriber Pizan1's Avatar
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    Talking Thanks!

    Thanks Armyfirerescue, I feel you are right, I may be argumentative and come off a little harsh, but I was only trying to make a point and defend my point.

  12. #12
    Forum Member MIKEYLIKESIT's Avatar
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    Gotta light?
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  13. #13
    District Chief distchief60b's Avatar
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    captaingonzo...you summed it up very well...however, I would suggest a one word summary:

    STUPIDITY!!!
    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.

  14. #14
    Forum Member HeavyRescueTech's Avatar
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    They may be idiots for setting each other on fire, and they reflect bad on themselves, but they in no way hurt the fire service, that is until the fire department made a big deal about it and blew it completely out of proportion.
    was it stupid? yes. was it dangerous? yes. were they all consenting adults? yes. were they wearing fire department identification? no. were they representing the fire department in any way? well, yeah, one guy mentioned that he was a firefighter, while speaking to jay. is that enough to crucify him? absolutly not!!!!

    these three idiots did it in their private time. i find it very hard to believe that the public will use these three people as prime examples of how everyone in the fire service acts.
    If my basic HazMat training has taught me nothing else, it's that if you see a glowing green monkey running away from something, follow that monkey!

    FF/EMT/DBP

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    I can't believe people make such a big deal about this. These guys were doing something on their own time, good for them. I'm sure everyone in the fire service sits in church during their off time. And these guys could be doing things that are much more offensive than doing a silly prank. The next time I see a fellow FF in a nudy bar, I'll be sure to ask him to leave because he has an image to uphold.

    If these guys were in Hartford, there would be a new rule in the contract, "Can't go on Jay Leno show".

  16. #16
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    What these guys did was stupid and why is this such a big deal? Ok he set him on fire but they told people at home not to do it and they also had fire extinguishers and used them. I'm gonna go with Pizan1 on most of the things he said. Fire prevention was there the gel and the fire extinguishersthat were used along with saying "dont try this at home" sounds like some kind of Fire prevention to me. Everyone is jumping over the fact that they are fire fighters and they set one of them on fire but not see the safety that they did to protect the set them selfs and everyone else in building.

  17. #17
    Forum Member Bones42's Avatar
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    Everyone is jumping over the fact that they are fire fighters and they set one of them on fire but not see the safety that they did to protect the set them selfs and everyone else in building
    Bingo! John Q Public is not seeing the safety either, they are seeing a stupid idiot setting himself on fire and getting on national TV. What will they remember? The extinguishers or the guy setting himself on fire?

    "Gee, when I grow up, I want to be on TV. Should I demonstrate fire safety or set myself on fire? Bet I can set my friend on fire instead, or maybe a couch, or maybe a car, or maybe a house..."

  18. #18
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    was it stupid? yes. was it dangerous? yes. were they all consenting adults? yes. were they wearing fire department identification? no. were they representing the fire department in any way? well, yeah, one guy mentioned that he was a firefighter, while speaking to jay. is that enough to crucify him? absolutly not!!!!
    From my first post

    I don't really care if they were FF or not. This was stupid and dangerous. Half of these people who are imitating the jackass stuff are adults.
    The fact of the matter is that it matters little that these idiots were FF. It matters that a "consenting" adult who is physiologically mature enough to breed thinks it is fun "adult" entertainment to set their chest hair on fire. Young adults can also imitate idiotic stunts (the Jackass "contestants" are almost always adults) and get seriously injured.

    The fact they are fire fighters just confirms my argument for mandatory psychologial testing to get hired. It also calls into serious question their credibility if they were to attempt to conduct any type of fire prevention activity.

  19. #19
    Forum Member DeputyChiefGonzo's Avatar
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    Originally posted by Quigger
    Fire prevention was there the gel and the fire extinguishersthat were used along with saying "dont try this at home" sounds like some kind of Fire prevention to me. Everyone is jumping over the fact that they are fire fighters and they set one of them on fire but not see the safety that they did to protect the set them selfs and everyone else in building.
    Quigger...You have got to be kidding... right?

    Pizan1...your logic is flawed....tragically flawed... read this quote...


    Even the local firefighters union president calls the July 10 gag, performed before millions of late-night viewers of "The
    Tonight Show with Jay Leno", an "irresponsible act" because it
    contradicts what firefighters preach.
    "We don't encourage our kids to do dangerous stunts," said
    Wichita fire Capt. Doug Pickard, president of the International
    Association of Firefighters, Local 135. "What kind of message did
    we send them?"
    Think about that when some kid tries to emulate the Wichita Whackos" and gets himself or others hurt.


    DrParasite...your quote

    these three idiots did it in their private time. i find it very hard to believe that the public will use these three people as prime examples of how everyone in the fire service acts.
    We are not remembered for what we did right in out careers, we are remembered and chastised for the times we screwed up!
    ‎"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

  20. #20
    MembersZone Subscriber ChiefReason's Avatar
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    If I understand correctly from the Pro-Wichita Three crowd, you can be stand up guys and some of the best firefighters this country has to offer when on duty, but you can be just as idiotic and ignorant as you want to be when you are off-duty? Please!
    Mike Wallace, Dan Rather, and Morley Safer would have been out of a job years ago if that were the case.
    We all have a moral compass. We know what is right and what is wrong.
    A firefighter with any conscience at all would know not to play with fire, especially where lighting a part of the body is involved and ABSOLUTELY where it involves lighting a part of the body on NATIONAL TV!
    And yes, they are still fellow firefighters and are no doubt still good firefighters, but they have demonstrated poor judgment in this case.
    Just my humble opinion.
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