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  1. #1
    Forum Member DeputyChiefGonzo's Avatar
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    Aug 2000
    Somewhere between genius and insanity!

    Default What jobs have you held?

    The idea from this thread came from a post on the career FF forum.

    What jobs have you held in your lifetime? It might be interesting to see where we came from!

    Mine: Junior High through High School
    Paper route, delivering the Lowell Sun.
    Shoveling snow in winter, mowing lawns in the summer.

    Worked at Blake's Ice Cream and Restaurant...everything from washing dishes to cooking on the grill.

    McQuade's Department store: shoe salesman (Distributive Education program at the high school...school in the AM, got to leave and work in the afternoon)

    College years:
    Worked a summer at Symphonic Electronics Company assembling cheapo stereos (boy, that sucked!)

    Worked summers for a pest control company (Bain Pest Control as part of the ""termite crew")

    Played bass guitar in a couple of of rock bands and as a part of a theatre group performing "Godspell".

    Worked at a pet store in sales.

    After College, pre FD:

    Cable TV cameraman (Greater Boston Cable Television)
    Bain Pest Control as a service tech.
    Radio Sales and voiceovers (WGTR-AM 1060)

    FD: Got appointed in 1981

    Part time jobs since FD:
    Stocking shelves in a supermarket.
    Gravedigger and grounds maintenance for a parish cemetary.
    Massachusetts Fire Academy 1982-1995, 2000 to present
    Auto detailing for a high end auto body shop and a limo service.
    My own detailing venture.
    Free lance writing and reporting for two local newspapers.
    Last edited by CaptainGonzo; 05-07-2007 at 02:15 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

  2. #2
    MembersZone Subscriber MalahatTwo7's Avatar
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    Mar 2002
    Loco madidus effercio in rutilus effercio.


    Hmm... During high school, worked as a dishwasher/kitchen hand for Pat Bay Officer and Cadet Training Center, spring 1987.

    Joined the army right out of high school, 1987 to present. 20 years service "comes due" 29 July 2007!!! WWWOOHHHOO (but I'm staying for another 5).

    Side jobs:

    Aug 2000 - Jun 05, worked with Malahat VFD

    Aug 2003 - Feb 04 drove oil tanker delivering home heating oil
    Jun 2004 - Jun 05 drove for PatientLink, picking up dead bodies for the local funeral homes.

    Nov 2005 signed on with Vienna VFD
    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)

    "I may be slow, but my work is poor." Chief Dave Balding, MVFD

    "Its not Rocket Science. Just use a LITTLE imagination." (Me)

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

    impossible solved cotidie. miracles postulo viginti - quattuor hora animadverto

    IACOJ member: Cheers, Play safe y'all.

  3. #3
    Forum Member Bones42's Avatar
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    Mar 2001
    Pt. Beach, NJ


    High school - Jersey Mike's Subs. (before it was a franchise - was the original store)

    College - is beer drinking a job? Worked for a private ambulance company doing transports and filling in as duty responder.

    Ever since college - computers. Almost anything with them.
    "This thread is being closed as it is off-topic and not related to the fire industry." - Isn't that what the Off Duty forum was for?

  4. #4
    Forum Member
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    Oct 2006


    McQuade's was a great store. I still have a jacket I bought in the basement of the Elm Street store in Manchester for $11.

    My first job was in a greenhouse, from 12 to 14.

    At 14 I could get my working papers, and I started the first of a series of "pizza and sub"-type jobs.

    In college I worked some landscaping, but my time was limited by ROTC. Which I consider a job, actually.

    8 years Reserve service.

    In law school, I did everything I could. Delivered newspapers, wrote summaries of bankruptcy cases for a legal publisher, worked landscaping, shelved books in a library, even sold Fuller Brush products. The Fuller Brush story often elicits a nostalgic response from people of a certain age, who were not aware that the company still exists.

    1 year app. clerkship.

    5 years in my present position at a large university. During the first 2 years, I was theoretically maintaining a private practice as well.

    A lot of jobs for someone who just turned 36.
    Last edited by randsc; 05-07-2007 at 02:16 PM. Reason: Just turned 36, not 35. Sh!T !!!

  5. #5
    Forum Member Chief2701's Avatar
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    Jun 2005
    Valparaiso Indiana USA


    Junior high/high School - Stockboy at local grocery store
    after graduation(1972) joined volunteer fire Department and started work at US Steel Gary works as a labor for the brickmasons. 4 months later started High Voltage Lineman apprenticeship (Stacking bricks sucks!)

    1978 Joined US Army and served 3 yrs regular 2 years National Guard and 1 year Reserve (Infantryman, Chemical Warfare NBC/NCO) returned to US Steel and began taking classes to become Safety engineer. early 80's due to being layed off from US Steel worked several odd jobs to include alittle male stripping Moved from Union to management as a Safety Engineer late 90's
    Served on several Departments due to relocating (Lake Staion Fire Department, Burns Harbor Fire Department, Hobart Fire IAFF1641)
    2003 retired after 31 years from US Steel and took job as Safety Adminstrator with Union Tank Car Company (UTLX)
    Joined South Haven Fire in 1988, and in 2004 Appointed Chief of the Department (combination department IAFF 3151 & IVFA)
    [FONT=Times New Roman]Douglas R. Patton
    "Omnis Cedo Domus"
    I am now a former Chief and the views, opinions, and comments are mine and mine alone.
    Isaiah 6:8

  6. #6
    Forum Member BFDNJFF's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2002


    - Food Store
    - Freezer Truck Driver
    - Medium Duty Truck salesman
    - Owned a Landscape company
    moved to SC
    - Career Fireman in SC
    moved back to NJ
    - Police Dispatcher
    - Federal Law Enforcement Officer

    Now looking into quitting and move to Florida. I want to try and get back into being a Firefighter. I miss it.

    ------GOD BLESS AMERICA ! ------

  7. #7
    MembersZone Subscriber RoughRider's Avatar
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    Mar 2005
    Oyster Bay, NY


    Paper route
    Little League Umpire
    Dish washer
    Burger Flipper
    Bar Tender
    Valet parker
    House Painter
    Construction Worker
    Tennis Pro~ Teaching
    Securities & Brokerage Management
    Municapal Bond Salesman & Trader
    Last edited by RoughRider; 05-08-2007 at 10:27 AM.
    Fortune does not change men; it unmasks them.

    The grass ain't greener, the wine ain't sweeter!! Either side of the hill.


  8. #8
    Leather Forever Sgnl50's Avatar
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    Aug 2003
    Glastonbury, Connecticut


    The Past:
    Record store clerk
    Tattoo Shop manager
    Bike Messenger
    Towing and Recovery Operator
    Health and Safety Coordinator Cirque Du Soleil North American Tours

    The Present:
    Owner of Signal 50 Industries www.signal50.com
    Co-Conspirator of www.100percentkulture.com
    Official EMT for the CT Roller Girls www.ctrollerderby.com
    Career Firefighter Pratt and Whitney Fire Department Local I-69

    Stay Well; Stay Safe

  9. #9
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Pacific Northwest


    (since arriving at working age until 20)

    Delivered papers
    Dishwasher at a Shari's restaraunt
    Interned at a Civil Engineering firm as CAD operator
    Delivered pizzas for Godfathers
    Delivered pizzas and eventually became an Asst Manager at a Pizza Hut

    (move from WA to NE, 3 years))

    Part time on call at FD
    Detailed cars
    WalMart cashier
    Truck stop cashier
    Framer/drywaller at a mobile home factory

    (move from NE to WI, 3 years)

    Worked at temp agency (did LOTS of stuff)
    Seasonal wildland FF for State of Minnesota
    Power Scheduling at utility company (first "real" job)
    (also VFD)

    (move from WI to MN, 3 years)

    Mgr of Customer Service and Director of training for software firm catering to power utility companies

    (move three hours North in MN, 3 years)

    Generation/Transmission/Distribution Dispatcher for utility company
    (also VFD)

    (move from MN back to WA, so far 7 months)

    Generation/Transmission/Distribution Dispatcher for BIGGER utility company
    VFD FF but also pulling paid shifts

    I am so sick of moving.
    Last edited by ElectricHoser; 05-07-2007 at 04:59 PM.
    You only have to be stupid once to be dead permanently
    IACOJ Power Company Liason
    When trouble arises and things look bad, there is always one individual who perceives a solution
    and is willing to take command. Very often, that individual is crazy. - Dave Barry.

  10. #10
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2006


    Elementary School- Folding newspapers at variety store saturdays and sundays, and paper route

    Middle School- Paper route, stock boy at grocery store

    High School- Landscaping, House Painting, Dry cleaners, Department Store Warehouse

    College- Driver/ Car Cleaner for Car Rental company, Night Watchman at Country Club, Security Guard, Bartender, Landscaping

    Pre-FD- Laborer for asphalt Company, Roofer, Bartender. Then got a good career job with a town for about 10 years but hated it.

    Hired by FD, Heavy Hauling and Rigging on the side.

    Probably some other jobs in there along the way, but that's the best I can remember. Anything to make a buck since I was a kid. Thanks Gonz, brought back some good memories!!

  11. #11
    Forum Member st42stephenAFT's Avatar
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    Mar 2007
    NoVA / NJ


    2 years as a parking lot attendant up at the boardwalk in the summer time (want to go back but no time )

    this is my 4th year working at the ice cream store down the street from me, mainly nights in the summer.

    and this will be my 3rd summer lifeguarding at a pool (all the time in the summer, reason why i have no time in the summer)

  12. #12
    MembersZone Subscriber mcaldwell's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2003
    Panorama, British Columbia, Canada



    High School:

    Summer Cadet Instructor when I was 15
    Landscaping and general contracting labour in the summer.
    Canadian Forces Reserves


    Pizza delivery and more general contracting/landscaping in college for beer money.
    Continued with the Canadian Forces Reserves

    After College:

    Construction Framing, concrete forming and finishing
    Security Supervisor and Medical Provider at the Ski Resort
    Head Doorman for a nightclub at the Ski Resort (side job)
    Public Amenities Supervisor at the Ski Resort (locksmith, key system management, and pool/waterpark/gym maintenance)
    Owned and Operated a photo lab and camera store
    Safety Manager
    Emergency Services Manager
    Never argue with an Idiot. They drag you down to their level, and then beat you with experience!


  13. #13
    MembersZone Subscriber JHR1985's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2003


    From 14-19 Worked as a plumber's apprentice. Yes, from 14. Dad owned the company and therefore I was cheap labor for digging ditches

    From 19 till Now: Working as a FF/Paramedic.

    And for 6 months, worked at a company that makes firefighting foam doing a bunch of foam testing.

    Now, I sleep and play video games on my days off

  14. #14
    MembersZone Subscriber lrg500's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2006


    College/Part-Time Jobs

    The Sports Authority--helped open a new store in my town
    Worked at a plant nursery--That really sucked!
    Cut grass and sold landscape materials--I got to play around with a skid steer

    Got Hired by FD in Dec. 2001

    Part-Time Jobs while with FD:
    Grounds Maintenance at a cemetery
    part-time with my VFD

    Left original FD to go to another--Had to resign 2 weeks after--Jan. 2006

    Worked at the Cemetery again
    Part-Time with my VFD
    Now working for a Special Events Company--tents, tables, chairs, etc.
    Filling out applications at different fire depts. trying to get back.

  15. #15
    MembersZone Subscriber
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    Nov 1999


    During high school I worked in a dairy that made ice cream. The owner said we could eat as much as we want. After a month, I couldn't stand the stuff.

    Worked at Radio Shack for a couple of years, sold some of the first TRS-80's in the area.

    Ran a gas station and pumped gas during a very cold winter.

    Spent a little more than 2 years in a machine shop as a quality control inspector. The shop made, among other items, cosmetic cases for Avon, pen casings, the bottles for Binaca breath spray and the sockets for car cigarette lighters.

    Started with the FD in 1985. Since then I worked part time for a power equipment company delivering lawn mowers, tractors, and snow blowers. I've been a part time instructor at the regional fire school for almost 20 years and with the CT Fire Academy for 14 years.
    Last edited by KenNFD1219; 05-07-2007 at 10:12 PM.
    "The most mediocre man or woman can suddenly seem dynamic, forceful, and decisive if he or she is mean enough." from "Crazy Bosses"
    Genius has its limits, but stupidity is boundless.

  16. #16
    Forum Member
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    Aug 2005
    Whangaparaoa Peninsular North Island New Zealand


    Born 1940
    1-Me and Fergie Bailey-aged 6 yrs-collected orange crates from local market-chopped them up for kindling fires (I knew it had to start somewhere!) tuppence a bundle.
    2-Upmarket job, collected horse dung for the allotment owners.
    3-Literary career beckoned aged about 8--newspaper delivery-morning round before school-nightime after school
    4-High finance job--all day Saturday -go collect money for boss of paper shop(still doing morning and night paper rounds), for all of the various other paper rounds.
    5-Step into transport business--bakers boy for Broomfields Bakery--horse and cart(the horse knew more than me)
    6 -Left school at 14 got apprenticed into the printing trade
    7-Decided the Merchant Navy was the career path -managed to get apprenticed as a potential deck officer( at not quite 16yrs old-Cried eyes out on first Christmas away from home on the Avenida Del Flores in Montevideo(sp?) or was it Buenos Aires?Anyway a bloody long way from home8-Left Merchant navy-seasick to many times-bullied by senior ranks and deckhands alike ****ed me off(being used as slave labour did not help either)
    9-Came ashore-found work in a foundry pouring molten metal
    10-Got offered a job as steel fixer-more wedge,took it
    11-Fancied the open road life-became a "truck drivin'man"
    12-Realised that truck driving was getting boring
    13-Lucky thirteen- applied to London Fire Brigade-accepted as career fireman(aged 22)
    14-Did 20yrs as a frontline fireman-Driver/Pump operator/Breaking and Entering/Turntable Ladder operator/Heavy rescue/Deep penetration B.A(both compressed air and Proto) Even did a Atomic Warfare course-Moreton-in-Marsh
    In London they do not specialise-all firemen do(or did) every thing required-non of this exterior /interior crap, its done on the S.A.S principle-everybody can do the next blokes job.
    Left the job aged 42-due to on duty service injury-no longer wanted or capable,but like a old warhorse I hear the bugles and I want to fight!

  17. #17
    Forum Member
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Cleveland, OK


    Worked at Sonic Drive-In flipping burgers at 16
    Worked for 3 diffrent grocery stores from 16-24
    Worked part-time for the FD/PD dispatching and vollie
    Went full-time for the FD at 24 (wish I would have started a lot sooner)
    Worked part-time for ambulance service when we went to private service
    Then part-time at Ace Hardware

  18. #18
    MembersZone Subscriber
    Join Date
    Feb 2007


    Started working. PT flipping burgers at Boots Drive-In in Overland Park, Ks at 15. Joined South Park FD (Overland Park FD funded) at 16. Was there for 2 years then went to the Merriam, Ks FD for 2yrs. Got married and moved to S.E. Ks. Where I worked at various jobs over the next few yrs trying to raise 3 kids. During this time I was a reserve L.E.O. (dispatching till 21). Was also member of local volunteer fire department. Decided I wanted to do both (L.E.O. and Firefighting) and that it was easier to be full time with the police department and vollie with the F.D.. So where ever I worked as a L.E.O. I was a member (P/T, POC or Vollie) of the local F.D.. Currently retired L.E.O., but am Div. Chief with the local V.F.D.. Trying to make it P.O.C. for the guys/gals, hopefully leading up to some F/T positions.


  19. #19
    Forum Member DeputyChiefGonzo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2000
    Somewhere between genius and insanity!


    Posted by 2andfrom

    In London they do not specialise-all firemen do(or did) every thing required-non of this exterior /interior crap, its done on the S.A.S principle-everybody can do the next blokes job.
    Amen. Brother, amen!
    ‎"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
    Forum Member backsteprescue123's Avatar
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    Apr 2004


    In my relativly short life I have held the following jobs:

    -Jack-of-all trades at a Jewelry/Clock Shop
    -Caddie at a local Country Club
    -Lifeguard/Instructor at a local Country Club
    -Lifeguard at my school
    -Swim Lessons instructor for Greater Toledo Aquatic Club
    -Jack-of-all trades for a guy who owns pretty much half of our town
    (e.g.- carpentry, electrical, plumbing, insulation, snow plowing, lawn care, maintenance, demolition, etc, etc, etc.....)

    I think that is it...
    These opinions are mine and do not reflect the opinions of any organizations I am affiliated with.

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