Greetings from Arizona. My name is Karl, I'm 40 and did not get "my calling" to the fire service until I was 38-ish and went through the academy. They [other younger recruits] called me "grandpa" and my second crew rotation dubbed me "Blue" (see the movive "Old School").. but what the heck, life is good. All career firefighters in AZ must be at least EMT-B but most of our department goes on to get paramedic as well. In addition, all firefighters have lots of great training options. They have sent tons of people to WMD training and we have certified in-house instructors for swift-water recue, confined space, high angle, etc etc and lots of haz-mat techs (I'll just stay at the operational level here, thankyou very much).

I love seeing/hearing how people do "our job" all over the country. There is alot of politics and people wanting to measure their manhood over how their dept is better yada yada yada.. but we're all doing the same thing to save people... sure wish fire/ems/etc would get along better in some parts of the country. Would enjoy hearing whats different about your department... training, call loads. etc. Its great how, in some ways, things are alot alike all the way across the country as well.

Outside of work (you mean there IS an ouside of work?) I am a private pilot and enjoy flying when the checkbook permits which is not as often as I would like. I work alot with my hands around the house, play a little poker.. and have great many other interests/hobbies. I look forward to reading everyone's posts.

Regards,
The Flapster