While most of my return trips from FDIC – the Fire Department Instructors Conference in Indianapolis, Indiana have been unremarkable, I’ve shared previous experiences of traveling home from this conference that have had an impact on my outlook on life. However, the way my most recent trip home from FDIC2017 played out is nothing short […]
Incident Management in the Fast Lane: Reducing Responder Road Rage! “From our perspective, we considered it a minor accident: two passenger cars, a few bumps and bruises but no serious injuries – to either driver or their vehicles. However, the way the vehicles were positioned in the roadway and the amount of clean-up that would […]
The term “Brotherhood” means different things to different people. Ask 100 firefighters what brotherhood is and you’ll get 100x different answers. You know it when you see it; you miss it when it’s gone and you certainly feel it when it’s turned against you. Used gender-generically to refer to this special, sometimes inexplicable bond that […]
While I believe it was P.T. Barnum who referred to the Ringling Brothers, Barnum & Bailey Circus as “The Greatest Show on Earth!” â€“ I’m not clowning around when I tell you that FDIC should beÂ one of the definitive destinations for every firefighter at least once in their career. Unfortunately, as fire department and personal […]
Recently I had the opportunity to participate in what I thought was going to be a “speed recruiting” event at a local high school, unaware until I got there that the tables would be turned and I was the one who was going to be interviewed. More than 30 high school sophomores, juniors and seniors […]
Despite the fact that I wrote this piece for Fire-Rescue Magazine last year, I’m pretty sure its content is still relevant as we ponder recent and not so recent events during Fire/EMS Safety, Health and Survival Week http://www.firefighternation.com/forum/topics/usfa-reminds-you-that…. As I stated in comments to another blog by John Mitchell (www.firedaily.com) titled: “The Charleston 43” (http://www.firefighternation.com/profiles/blogs/the-charleston-43) […]
“You have a mass in your throat,” he said after examining me, “It looks malignant. And aggressive.” He looked me right in the eye as he spoke, making sure I understood the gravity of his comments. My wife Mary Ann and I sat in stunned silence as he informed us of what needed to be done to complete his diagnosis. As he talked on, my mind took me back to all of those times when I entered burning buildings without breathing protection, and all of the times I worked for hours, unprotected, doing salvage and overhaul in the smoldering remains of fires over the past three decades. Like my peers, I had felt bullet-proof in those days. I had always thought that cancer was something that happened to other people. Not me. Now, for the first time, I was actually afraid for my life.