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    Default Letter from IAFF's Schaitberger about Charleston's Memorial Service

    We are already hearing from our Leadership as well as many of our
    disappointed Brothers and Sisters from across the continent that the
    memorial service for the nine Charleston fire fighters, who died in the line
    of duty Monday evening, doesn't seem to be very organized and up to the
    IAFF's normal standards for funerals and memorials.

    The reason for this is simple. The IAFF is not in charge of this service. Let me be very clear and frank about the situation in Charleston. This is an openly anti-union city that is hostile towards the IAFF. The Chief and Mayor are not, as an understatement, labor friendly and believe they can do everything themselves. The Chief refused all assistance from the IAFC, and
    even refused assistance of the state USAR team.

    The Chief and the Mayor have resisted any of our planning ideas and have refused all IAFF offers of assistance. They appointed the president of the state volunteers association, Jim Bowie, to run the entire memorial program.
    Bowie does not like the IAFF, our state association or its president Mike
    Parrotta, because Mike has fought to improve standards in the state. In
    fact, Bowie has been lobbying for lower (more volunteer friendly) standards.
    Bowie led the charge against the 2 in 2 out standard helping to establish
    the 2-in-1-out rule that prevails in South Carolina (the only state in the
    nation that doesn't follow OSHA standards of 2-in-2-out), and Bowie lobbied
    to make sure many buildings in the state were not required to be retrofitted
    for sprinklers.

    Bowie is also the leader of the South Carolina first responders for Giuliani
    campaign and has attempted to make this memorial a platform for Rudy. We
    are fighting to keep this from becoming another political platform.

    Regardless, we have our 12th District Vice President Larry Osborne, Mike Parrotta, and senior staff Jeff Zack, Rich Duffy and Pat Morrison on the ground and weighing in where they can. They are spending their time assisting Local 61 and our fallen families, but they are running into a brick wall on all decisions related to the memorial. Because of the situation, we also have limited access to the VIP area. Only principal officers, district vice presidents, and the South Carolina state leadership will have official access.

    Bowie is making ALL of the decisions regarding this memorial. He has only
    allowed us to attend meetings where they are simply announcing the decisions that have been made. And he has summarily rejected any and all advice we have provided at every turn -- including that trying to do this memorial on Friday is way too soon.

    We were informed that the FDNY Pipe and Drums had been invited by the
    Charleston Fire Department to play in the ceremony and that no other pipe
    bands would be allowed to play. If we had been involved, we would have
    coordinated the participation of other pipe bands. We were not party to or
    involved in this decision.

    I will be forwarding this email to the IAFF state and provincial presidents and our major affiliate leadership so that they are aware of the situation and will ask them, if their state or provincial has a pipe and drum corp or honor guard, to please contact these organizations to let them know that the IAFF had no control over the planning of this event.

    This memo is meant to be very direct. I don't want us to pull any punches
    with our leadership or members on this unfortunate situation. When you hear
    a complaint from an affiliate, member, honor guard, pipe or drummer about
    this memorial, make sure to inform them that the IAFF has not been permitted
    to plan or to make any of the decisions regarding this event.

    Fraternally,
    Harold A. Schaitberger
    General President
    International Association of Fire Fighters

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    Well, I see this thread getting real ugly, real fast....

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    Why should it get ugly? The facts are the facts.

    Rest in Peace Brothers.

    FyredUp

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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    Why should it get ugly? The facts are the facts.

    Rest in Peace Brothers.

    FyredUp

    Why? For starters, I believe one of our fellow Forum members had a hand in planning the Memorial, and this thread may be hurtful to him. Secondly, I think Harold is using this to kick Chief Thomas while he's down, and I'm sorry, but anti-union or not this man just buried 9 of his men, and I think it's too soon to be starting BS like this publically. Finally, just like any thread involving the IAFF, I see it degenerating into a union vs non-union, career vs volunteer flame-fest like it always does. Feel free to flame me, but that's the feeling I get as to how this one will deteriorate.

    And amen to the RIP brothers.

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    Thumbs down

    Please don't turn these brothers' deaths into some flame war centered around firefighting politics. We need to honor them with dignity and respect and support our brothers in Charleston. Don't forget the thread that bonds everyone here together and that is the fact everyone shares the same duty.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KnightnPBIArmor View Post
    ......but anti-union or not this man just buried 9 of his men......
    That is exactly why they should have allowed the IAFF, or anyone with experience in that area that was not directly involved, to aid in the memorial service.

    The administration was so adamantly against the IAFF that they turned away help during what is probably the most tragic and overwhelming event that the Charleston Fire Department has ever experienced. Its really sad, but not as sad as the famalies that are still mourning. God bless them.
    RK
    cell #901-494-9437

    Management is making sure things are done right. Leadership is doing the right thing. The fire service needs alot more leaders and a lot less managers.

    "Everyone goes home" is the mantra for the pussification of the modern, American fire service.


    Comments made are my own. They do not represent the official position or opinion of the Fire Department or the City for which I am employed. In fact, they are normally exactly the opposite.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KnightnPBIArmor View Post
    Why? For starters, I believe one of our fellow Forum members had a hand in planning the Memorial, and this thread may be hurtful to him. Secondly, I think Harold is using this to kick Chief Thomas while he's down, and I'm sorry, but anti-union or not this man just buried 9 of his men, and I think it's too soon to be starting BS like this publically. Finally, just like any thread involving the IAFF, I see it degenerating into a union vs non-union, career vs volunteer flame-fest like it always does. Feel free to flame me, but that's the feeling I get as to how this one will deteriorate.

    And amen to the RIP brothers.
    Well, I am very sorry that one of the fellow Forum members was involved in planning the event and that this might be hurtful to him. However, there are thousands of members of the IAFF and probably volunteers who were also hurt that they were not able to participate in this Memorial Service in some capacity. Furthermore, in my opinion and most of the members of my firehouse scheduling the service 4 days after the tragedy was a travesty to those honorable men that lost their lives. With proper planning, and the IAFF's help there could have been 50,000 firefighters in Charleston showing their support.

    This is not a shot against volunteers at all! Let me make that very clear. If this had been 9 volunteers so tragically killed I would have felt the same way. I don't play the professional v. volunteer game.

    The IAFF does battle it's demons, however one thing they do right is memorial services. Anyone from this Forum that attended Worcesters service in 1999 will remember how incredible it was to march two miles through the city, with tens of thousands of other Jakes. I was fortunate enough to make it into the Worcester Centrum at the time and will never forget what it was like to hear the lone piper from the Boston Gaelic Fire Brigade beginning to play Amazing Grace. The tragedy happened on a Friday night, and the service was the following Thursday. Plenty of time to coordinate amongst attendees, and for people to make travel arrangements.

    In fairness I will say that our E-Board and Death & Welfare Board attended the service. From the feedback I've heard it went better than they had expected.

    May the fallen brothers rest in peace.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MemphisE34a View Post
    That is exactly why they should have allowed the IAFF, or anyone with experience in that area that was not directly involved, to aid in the memorial service.

    The administration was so adamantly against the IAFF that they turned away help during what is probably the most tragic and overwhelming event that the Charleston Fire Department has ever experienced. Its really sad, but not as sad as the famalies that are still mourning. God bless them.
    Or maybe the IAFF prez is blowing something out of proportion, using stuff that may not be entirely true, in order to push his anti-volunteer agenda.

    The administration may be wrong in turning away the IAFF, but the IAFF Prez is a ****bag for using the deaths of 9 brothers to further his agenda. At least have the decency to wait until after the memorial is completed and the brothers have been buried before you start with your political BS
    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!

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    Okay, I didn't want to go there but here goes.

    Resect the Brothers who died. Pray for their families, friends and Brothers and Sisters in the fire service. Try to learn what we can from this tragedy.

    But, as for the bickering over the top of such fresh new graves of OUR BROTHERS over this kind of thing...please do shut the Hell up.

    FyredUp

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    Quote Originally Posted by BostonJake2340 View Post
    . Furthermore, in my opinion and most of the members of my firehouse scheduling the service 4 days after the tragedy was a travesty to those honorable men that lost their lives.
    .

    Is there maybe the remotest of possibilities that the FAMILIES wanted to have it 4 days after so that they could lay their loved ones to rest?

    And being one who was at the ceremony I thought it was very well done, very touching, and did a very good job in honoring these brave men..certainly not the "unfortunate situation" Harold portrayed it as....

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    Quote Originally Posted by FyredUp View Post
    Okay, I didn't want to go there but here goes.

    Resect the Brothers who died. Pray for their families, friends and Brothers and Sisters in the fire service. Try to learn what we can from this tragedy.

    But, as for the bickering over the top of such fresh new graves of OUR BROTHERS over this kind of thing...please do shut the Hell up.

    FyredUp
    Fyred, that was my whole point in the first place in regards to HS's letter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KnightnPBIArmor View Post
    Is there maybe the remotest of possibilities that the FAMILIES wanted to have it 4 days after so that they could lay their loved ones to rest?

    And being one who was at the ceremony I thought it was very well done, very touching, and did a very good job in honoring these brave men..certainly not the "unfortunate situation" Harold portrayed it as....
    Do you think the families were in any shape to make decisions at that time? That's why in these types of situations the Union plays such a vital role in helping plan services. The IAFF has the experience to do an outstanding job.

    I'm glad you thought it was "very well done". As I said before members that I've spoken to that attended were surprised that it went as well as it did. I'm saying that it could have been better. Did you go to Worcester? Have you ever been to an FDNY or BFD funeral? As sad as it is to say practice makes perfect and these guys are really top-notch in this department.

    Regarding Schaitberger I think you are missing the point. He had to issue a response because he was being innundated by thousands of members that wanted to play a role in the service. I'm not always on the same page as Schaitberger (see my previous posts if you want proof) but I'll stand by him on this one.

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    Dr. Parasite,

    I certainly understand your doubt and "what if" take in the issue. I can tell you only this.

    Memphis Firefighters Local 1784 had one of the greatest union guys I have ever seen or heard of. Granted that may not be that extensive, but he was awesome!! Tommy Malone served on the eboard of Local 1784 for many, many years and served during my time as the Vice-President and President. He has now retired and is serving as a "Super-Rep" for the International. From what I understand, he goes where they need help.

    At any rate, I have never known Tommy to lie to me or anyone else. I had heard this story, on his authority (thorugh some of the current eboard members) this story days ago. Prior to reading any such memo of the even t from Pres. Schaitberger on here in in any other forum.

    Basically - If Tommy told us, its just how it is. Charleston refused any and all help from the IAFF in all forms and fashions. Most certainly, the IAFF would have entered Charleston with an agenda - that is happening anyway. They also would have certainly provided a mermorial service for 9 brave brothers that would have made everyone, especially the families feel proud.

    I am not necessarily faulting either side. It would just seem that in moments of extreme tradegy that all sides could let their guard down long enough to mourn for our fallen.

    Again, my thoughts and prayers are with the families of the lost nine and the members of the CFD.
    RK
    cell #901-494-9437

    Management is making sure things are done right. Leadership is doing the right thing. The fire service needs alot more leaders and a lot less managers.

    "Everyone goes home" is the mantra for the pussification of the modern, American fire service.


    Comments made are my own. They do not represent the official position or opinion of the Fire Department or the City for which I am employed. In fact, they are normally exactly the opposite.

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    He could simply have stated, "We were shut out of the planning for this", and kept his conspiracy theory to himself.

    As even his memo makes clear, Charleston refused help from ANYONE (including the supposedly vollie-friendly IAFC).

    They may well have been wrong to do this, but it is a strong indication that their reasons for shutting out the IAFF had little to do with labor politics.

    He was playing politics, pure and simple.

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    Who cares who planned the memorial. Respect the fallen, not an agenda.
    NREMT-P\ Reserve Volunteer Firefighter\Reserve Police Officer
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    What does it really matter who arranged, helped arrange, participated, or whatever with this funeral. A firefighter's funeral is not about the IAFF, NVFC, IAFC, or any other fire service organization. It is about those brave souls that gave the ultimate price, their families, their friends, and the brothers and sisters they worked with day-in, day-out. From what I saw, they were put to rest with honor and respect, that's what matters.

    Schaitberger's letter should have stopped after "the IAFF is not in charge of this service." To make this into a political, or any other agenda, is about as low-life as it gets, in my opinion.

    May these men rest in peace.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BostonJake2340 View Post
    With proper planning, and the IAFF's help there could have been 50,000 firefighters in Charleston showing their support. ....



    The IAFF does battle it's demons, however one thing they do right is memorial services.
    As I have mentioned previously, I feel the ceremony was very well done and did our fallen brothers justice...in the interest of fairness let's say the IAFF WAS asked to assist...other than enabling more members to attend and having more pipe bands, what exactly do y'all feel they would have done differently?

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    Ok guys... I am going to go through this slowly.

    I am the person that Knight was talking about being involved in the services. I will address as much information as I can. First let me disect the IAFF Presidents letter.

    We are already hearing from our Leadership as well as many of our
    disappointed Brothers and Sisters from across the continent that the
    memorial service for the nine Charleston fire fighters, who died in the line
    of duty Monday evening, doesn't seem to be very organized and up to the
    IAFF's normal standards for funerals and memorials.
    This was a very well organized event. The Chief of the Worcester Fire Department was there from the very beginning assisting us and giving us insight as to how his services went. He seemed to be VERY PLEASED as to what transpired.

    I am not sure what the IAFF memorial standards are but they could not do any better than what we did. Fact is people were upset that they were not invited in on the minute by minute planning on the event.

    The reason for this is simple. The IAFF is not in charge of this service. Let me be very clear and frank about the situation in Charleston. This is an openly anti-union city that is hostile towards the IAFF. The Chief and Mayor are not, as an understatement, labor friendly and believe they can do everything themselves. The Chief refused all assistance from the IAFC, and
    even refused assistance of the state USAR team.
    I cannot deny that the IAFF and the Charleston Fire Department, for the most part, do not see eye to eye. I am not sure what the situation was with the IAFC and NO assistance was refused from the State USAR.

    The Chief and the Mayor have resisted any of our planning ideas and have refused all IAFF offers of assistance. They appointed the president of the state volunteers association, Jim Bowie, to run the entire memorial program. Bowie does not like the IAFF, our state association or its president Mike Parrotta, because Mike has fought to improve standards in the state. In
    fact, Bowie has been lobbying for lower (more volunteer friendly) standards.
    Bowie led the charge against the 2 in 2 out standard helping to establish
    the 2-in-1-out rule that prevails in South Carolina (the only state in the
    nation that doesn't follow OSHA standards of 2-in-2-out), and Bowie lobbied
    to make sure many buildings in the state were not required to be retrofitted
    for sprinklers.
    Political CRAP! The choice of the State Firefighters Association to be in charge of the memorial event as well as coordinating with the South Carolina Mobilization group to man the CFD Stations for five days so THAT ALL OF THE CFD FIREFIGHTERS COULD TAKE OFF AND NOT WORRY ABOUT WORK was offered to the Charleston Fire Department and accepted. There was no direct plot to make the IAFF look bad or to purposely keep them out. The rest of this crap above is not even worth attempting to correct.

    Bowie is also the leader of the South Carolina first responders for Giuliani campaign and has attempted to make this memorial a platform for Rudy. We are fighting to keep this from becoming another political platform.
    This was not the case and in fact discouraged the Mayor from attending. He wanted to attend and ACTUALLY requested he be placed in a room out of site of the cameras so the "political platform" card would not be pulled.

    Regardless, we have our 12th District Vice President Larry Osborne, Mike Parrotta, and senior staff Jeff Zack, Rich Duffy and Pat Morrison on the ground and weighing in where they can. They are spending their time assisting Local 61 and our fallen families, but they are running into a brick wall on all decisions related to the memorial. Because of the situation, we also have limited access to the VIP area. Only principal officers, district vice presidents, and the South Carolina state leadership will have official access.
    This is crap. I was there. I saw your guys in the room. Hell there were IAFF members in and out of there all day. Fact is they had no decisions as to what was going to happen and they were mad. Just because and organization has resources to help with a situation does not mean those resources have to be used. Our resources were more than adequate and most likely exceeded the IAFF's to certain levels.

    Bowie is making ALL of the decisions regarding this memorial. He has only allowed us to attend meetings where they are simply announcing the decisions that have been made. And he has summarily rejected any and all advice we have provided at every turn -- including that trying to do this memorial on Friday is way too soon.
    The memorial was on Friday only after being discussed with the families and getting final word from the Fire Department. That is a fact. No decisions were made without the families blessing and the Fire Department finalizing it.

    We were informed that the FDNY Pipe and Drums had been invited by the Charleston Fire Department to play in the ceremony and that no other pipe bands would be allowed to play. If we had been involved, we would have
    coordinated the participation of other pipe bands. We were not party to or
    involved in this decision.
    The FDNY Emerald Society was requested by Fire Department and they graciously accepted. We had offers from tons of Pipe Bands and it was the request of the FDNY Pipers that they not play with anyone they have never practiced with. We simply honored their request. I am sorry some of these pipers got their kilts all in a bunch but it was not done out of spite... just a request from the band that was playing.

    I will be forwarding this email to the IAFF state and provincial presidents and our major affiliate leadership so that they are aware of the situation and will ask them, if their state or provincial has a pipe and drum corp or honor guard, to please contact these organizations to let them know that the IAFF had no control over the planning of this event.
    Absolutley... the IAFF had no control over the planning of this event.

    This memo is meant to be very direct. I don't want us to pull any punches with our leadership or members on this unfortunate situation. When you hear a complaint from an affiliate, member, honor guard, pipe or drummer about this memorial, make sure to inform them that the IAFF has not been permitted to plan or to make any of the decisions regarding this event.
    Again... absolutley... the IAFF had no control over the planning of this event.

    now on to the next post...

    FyredUp - Why should it get ugly? The facts are the facts.

    Rest in Peace Brothers.
    Who facts... the real ones or the ones you only want to listen to or the ones that will forward your agenda.

    MemphisE34a - That is exactly why they should have allowed the IAFF, or anyone with experience in that area that was not directly involved, to aid in the memorial service.

    The administration was so adamantly against the IAFF that they turned away help during what is probably the most tragic and overwhelming event that the Charleston Fire Department has ever experienced. Its really sad, but not as sad as the famalies that are still mourning. God bless them.
    We had plenty of assistance. There was no need for the IAFF to be heavily involved. You ask anyone of the families how the services went. Ask them and I bet you they will have no complaints.

    Or maybe the IAFF prez is blowing something out of proportion, using stuff that may not be entirely true, in order to push his anti-volunteer agenda.

    The administration may be wrong in turning away the IAFF, but the IAFF Prez is a ****bag for using the deaths of 9 brothers to further his agenda. At least have the decency to wait until after the memorial is completed and the brothers have been buried before you start with your political BS
    I will agree with this with the exception it was wrong for the IAFF to not be involved. We had more than adequate resources to complete the task.

    KnightnPBIArmor - Is there maybe the remotest of possibilities that the FAMILIES wanted to have it 4 days after so that they could lay their loved ones to rest?

    And being one who was at the ceremony I thought it was very well done, very touching, and did a very good job in honoring these brave men..certainly not the "unfortunate situation" Harold portrayed it as....
    As I stated before... nothing was done without the families approval.

    BostonJake2340 - Do you think the families were in any shape to make decisions at that time? That's why in these types of situations the Union plays such a vital role in helping plan services. The IAFF has the experience to do an outstanding job.

    I'm glad you thought it was "very well done". As I said before members that I've spoken to that attended were surprised that it went as well as it did. I'm saying that it could have been better. Did you go to Worcester? Have you ever been to an FDNY or BFD funeral? As sad as it is to say practice makes perfect and these guys are really top-notch in this department.

    Regarding Schaitberger I think you are missing the point. He had to issue a response because he was being innundated by thousands of members that wanted to play a role in the service. I'm not always on the same page as Schaitberger (see my previous posts if you want proof) but I'll stand by him on this one.
    The families were well within their right to stop everything. This was not done and never approached.

    I want these members or people that attended to get on this board and tell us what was done wrong. Other than the obvious IAFF not being involved. The families were not wanting for anything. EVERYTHING WAS TAKEN CARE OF. NOTHING WAS LEFT OUT.

    I think it may be a slight ring of jealously on the IAFF's part that someone other than them could actually pull this off. If that upsets people... sorry... but the truth hurts.

    MemphisE34 - I certainly understand your doubt and "what if" take in the issue. I can tell you only this.

    Memphis Firefighters Local 1784 had one of the greatest union guys I have ever seen or heard of. Granted that may not be that extensive, but he was awesome!! Tommy Malone served on the eboard of Local 1784 for many, many years and served during my time as the Vice-President and President. He has now retired and is serving as a "Super-Rep" for the International. From what I understand, he goes where they need help.

    At any rate, I have never known Tommy to lie to me or anyone else. I had heard this story, on his authority (thorugh some of the current eboard members) this story days ago. Prior to reading any such memo of the even t from Pres. Schaitberger on here in in any other forum.

    Basically - If Tommy told us, its just how it is. Charleston refused any and all help from the IAFF in all forms and fashions. Most certainly, the IAFF would have entered Charleston with an agenda - that is happening anyway. They also would have certainly provided a mermorial service for 9 brave brothers that would have made everyone, especially the families feel proud.

    I am not necessarily faulting either side. It would just seem that in moments of extreme tradegy that all sides could let their guard down long enough to mourn for our fallen.

    Again, my thoughts and prayers are with the families of the lost nine and the members of the CFD.
    Maybe it this arrogant attitude on agendas that kept the IAFF from being involved. I have no doubt that the IAFF would done a good job. But for your to sit here and insinuate that we did no better... I take personal offense to that. The ceremony was great.

    Fact is people are ****ed that they were not included and the memorial worked out and was great without the IAFF's assistance. Like I said... truth hurts.

    RyanEMVFD - Who cares who planned the memorial. Respect the fallen, not an agenda.
    Absolutely... who cares who did it... as long as it got done.

    Catch22 - What does it really matter who arranged, helped arrange, participated, or whatever with this funeral. A firefighter's funeral is not about the IAFF, NVFC, IAFC, or any other fire service organization. It is about those brave souls that gave the ultimate price, their families, their friends, and the brothers and sisters they worked with day-in, day-out. From what I saw, they were put to rest with honor and respect, that's what matters.

    Schaitberger's letter should have stopped after "the IAFF is not in charge of this service." To make this into a political, or any other agenda, is about as low-life as it gets, in my opinion.

    May these men rest in peace.
    Very well said!

    KnightnPBIArmor - As I have mentioned previously, I feel the ceremony was very well done and did our fallen brothers justice...in the interest of fairness let's say the IAFF WAS asked to assist...other than enabling more members to attend and having more pipe bands, what exactly do y'all feel they would have done differently?
    I am anxious to hear the answer to this questioon. Good one Knight!

    I am not going to sit here and fight about this. I have no problem with the Union in the fire service. I just have a problem with some of its agendas. Just because I think for myself and do not blindly follow the IAFF banner does not make me or anybody involved with this service a bad guy.

    We accomplished this without the IAFF's assistance. I think that the other questions were answered more than adequatley. If anyone else has any please post them and I will gladly answer to the best of my ability.

    I have no hard feeling for any of the people that posted on this topic. I just wanted to make sure that the whole message was getting out.
    Always remember the CHARLESTON 9

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    North Charleston and American LaFrance Fire Museum
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    Grant, I think you've showed amazing class, patience and restraint in your responses to various threads throughout this whole sad ordeal.
    September 11th - Never Forget

    I respect firefighters and emergency workers worldwide. Thank you for what you do.

    Sheri
    IACOJ CRUSTY CONVENTION CHAIR
    Honorary Flatlander

    RAY WAS HERE FIRST

  20. #20
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    After hearing what Grant had to say, I only have one thing to say-

    WEBTEAM- LOCK THIS ONE HERE AND NOW! PLEASE! THIS THREAD NOW HAS NO VALUE AND THERE ARE NO MORE CONSTRUCTIVE COMMENTS THAT CAN BE MADE TO INCREASE THE VALIDITY OF THIS THREAD!
    "Loyalty Above all Else. Except Honor."

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    Quote Originally Posted by FWDbuff View Post
    After hearing what Grant had to say, I only have one thing to say-

    WEBTEAM- LOCK THIS ONE HERE AND NOW! PLEASE! THIS THREAD NOW HAS NO VALUE AND THERE ARE NO MORE CONSTRUCTIVE COMMENTS THAT CAN BE MADE TO INCREASE THE VALIDITY OF THIS THREAD!

    I'll second the motion.
    "Yeah, but as I've always said, this country has A.D.D." - Denis Leary

    http://www.lettertogop.com/

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    You know, the only folks that should have had the real final say in how the memorial service was run is the family's of the brother's who were lost. I hope they had a say in who ran things, not the Mayor or other city leaders, not the Chief of the Fire Department, not the IAFF, local or national. This should be first and foremost about the families, I don't know what role they did or did not have, but except for what Grant just stated they seem to be lost in this debate.
    Be for Peace, but don't be for the Enemy!
    -Big Russ

    Learn from the mistakes of others; you won't live long enough to make them all yourself.

    Quote Originally Posted by nyckftbl View Post
    LOL....dont you people have anything else to do besides b*tch about our b*tching?

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    With all due respect, a thread shoud never be locked on the basis that FWDbuff has proposed.

    If the thread is to die it should do so from disinterest and not from any attempt to stifle controversial opinions.

    The purpose of a forum is to exchange ideas, experiences, and opinions. Active exchages stay near the top of the forum; inactive ones fall away and out of sight on their own.

    Attempting to muzzle an active topic simply because the content might be unpopular is incredibly poor forum management.
    "Nemo Plus Voluptatis Quam Nos Habant"

    The Code is more what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules.

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    -Fact: That all parties involved appear to be pleased at the development and execution of their plans.

    -Fact: That the families involved approved of the close time-frame of the memorial.

    I merely request this thread be locked out of respect to the fallen, their brothers, and their loved ones. Absolutely, positively no more good can come from allowing this thread to proceed on "what if's" and "well they would haves."

    If you guys wanna bicker about what the IAFF could or would have done differently, why not start a seperate thread. The ONLY reason that letter was pushed by Schaitberger is because his panties are up his crack about 11 inches because he wasn't invited. So he decided to turn the mourning of 9 into his own political agenda.

    Lock the thread. We all know the only destination for this one is ugliness and eventual lockdown anyways. So do it now and get it over with.
    "Loyalty Above all Else. Except Honor."

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    Sconfire; Nice Job, great response.

    I was only able to watch the service on a web cast. Although I was not there I think things were very nice.

    There is always Monday morning quaterbacking after any large event like this or any other kind. Heck if you are a good firefighter you always think in this mode....We call them critiques. This letter may have been published in this vain.

    I do think and it appears to me that the presidents letter may have been sour grapes or had other motivations. ( It kind of reminds me of the Red Cross when they are not permitted to be at the center of attention)

    The only question I have for those that know or are families of the brothers who gave the Supreme Sacrifice is, With them looking down upon the service would they have been proud? That is all that matters. The opinions of one of the member's bass fishing club, Union, Softball team or whatever means nothing!!!
    If I'm not here I'm on http://ctfire-ems.com/indexc.php

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