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Firefighter For Life

Updated on June 12, 2013

Firefighters - My Way Of Life

A firefighter is a symbol everywhere of trust, honor, dedication and hope. Firefighters are brave and strong. Work hard, train even harder and are there for you when you need them. Beyond the fire, the sirens and lights, beyond the compassion in the worst of times in someone's life and underneath the gear they wear, are people just like you. With real lives, hopes, families, frustrations and triumphs.

I know all of this to be true. I am a firefighter.

I am honored to hold that title.

Firefighter Passion

Structure Fire
Structure Fire

It is only with passion that you can truly be a firefighter. Desire, want, need are all good attributes. Honor, courage and strength, definitely. But only with passion can you put all the pieces together.

Passion for training. For learning how to keep your crew, your community, yourself safe. Practicing what you learn, over and over and over again. With new crews. New equipment. Even on your own. You have to believe strongly in your training. In your gear. In your crew and your officers.

My passion to be the very best firefighter I can be started almost 20 years ago and has grown every day since.

The passion to respond to every call, whether it is a false alarm or a building with victims entrapped comes with every call. Every time the tones go off, you want to be on that truck. Don your bunker gear. Be there to help.

A firefighter's passion for the job burns as hot as any flame we fight and grows with every emergency we respond to. I know that every single call is another learning experience. About alarm systems, firefighting, my crew, my equipment, the road conditions or pre-planning a building so that if an emergency happens there, I remember something else about that environment.

Pictured in the photo: Me and my crew at a structure fire as first due engine in our district.

Training Firefighters

Training
Training

If you love firefighting, then you have to love training. It will save your life. It will save someone else's life. It will make you look really good when things are going really bad.

I became a Level I instructor so I could help train our guys on SCBA and basic firefighter instruction. We train at our Fire Station a minimum of four times a month, two is mandatory a month for every member. We train in station. We go to different Fire Academies to hold Live Burns. We practice Search and Rescue in local buildings and our own station. We watch videos sometimes especially in the winter when spraying water will just freeze our roadways. We learn and practice and learn some more.

Read, read, read we tell our guys. Back in the day, there was no Internet to learn from! How did we do it. Now you can learn more about firefighting and fire scene mistakes you shouldn't make just by watching YouTube then we could at the Academy.

Learn firefighters. Practice whether your are a Rookie, A Fire Officer or a Senior Firefighter. Never stop learning.

My Bunker Gear

My Bunker Gear
My Bunker Gear

When I joined the fire department almost 20 years there were no women on the department. One or two had tried but not only is it very physically intense and challenging so were the men who really, really didn't want any women on their fire department. When I earned my first set of fitted gear after graduating the Fire Academy, the Chief and firemen in the department as well as the vendor who had to measure me were pretty horrified that a woman had to be ummm, you know measured everywhere. It didn't bother me at all, hey my first set of real bunker gear bring it on!!

My bunker gear is more familiar to me now than anything else I have ever worn. It is fitted for me when it is purchased. I am very lucky our Chiefs allowed me to add just the right tabs where I like them for rope bags, radio mikes, ID accountability tags, everything is just where it should be. I can close my eyes and know exactly where everything is and after a call I make sure it is all back in the same place. Every call. One glove in each pocket, assorted chocks and window holder clips and handy tool sets and a knife - one in my bunker jacket pocket, one in my gear pants on opposite sides.

My helmet strap is fitted to work perfectly when my SCBA mask is on, chocks in my helmet band, small LED helmet light on the right side. It's red because I have the honor of being our department Captain.

When I joined the great debate was Nomex hoods, hell how will we ever know the fire is too hot if we don't burn our ears off LOL - today no firefighter would ever be caught without his nomex hood.

My boots are awesome leather, no more rubber boots for me like when I first joined 20 years ago. That is a great advancement for firefighters.

Team Shots Firefighter Crews

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Structure Fire flames showing on arrival.Making entry into a multi residential condo building with heavy fire showing.Firefighting from the exterior at a local motel with heavy fire showing though at least 8 attached rooms when we arrived on location.Firefighter pre-schoolers during Fire Prevention Week, my favorite red helmet firefighter of all.
Structure Fire flames showing on arrival.
Structure Fire flames showing on arrival.
Making entry into a multi residential condo building with heavy fire showing.
Making entry into a multi residential condo building with heavy fire showing.
Firefighting from the exterior at a local motel with heavy fire showing though at least 8 attached rooms when we arrived on location.
Firefighting from the exterior at a local motel with heavy fire showing though at least 8 attached rooms when we arrived on location.
Firefighter pre-schoolers during Fire Prevention Week, my favorite red helmet firefighter of all.
Firefighter pre-schoolers during Fire Prevention Week, my favorite red helmet firefighter of all.

Firefighter Weather

Firefighter Weather
Firefighter Weather

Firefighters have to keep on firefighting now matter what the weather is. So many lightning storms, hurricanes, nor'easters - so many. Downed wires, dangerous roads, houses struck by lightning on fire, trees down on homes and roadways. Winds so strong we can barely stand up. Rain so heavy it's hard to see. We have a dam that floods over, roads we know will flood and no matter what the weather reports say, people will still be driving on the dangerous roadways.

Snow storms, blizzards, black ice and hydrants buried by the snow fall. Not an unusual challenge for us. When the weather forecasters get going and most people are buying their bread, milk and eggs to huddle up at home, we are packing our gear bags full of clothes and toothbrushes and heading down to the station for the next couple of days ready for whatever Mother Nature will reap upon our community. So long family. So long cozy bed. See you in a couple of very busy days.

In the Summer we face the opposite problem. Seasons of 100 degree days, blistering sun and high humidity with no break, until the violent thunderstorms hit. Working in our gear in that weather is not so fun, but we hydrate and after years and years of doing it, my body has learned to adapt.

Go Big or Go Home

Structure Fire
Structure Fire

I remember a senior firefighter telling me once, listen girlie, go big or go home. They get big these fires so if you can't handle the heat, how about going back into the kitchen. Nah, it didn't really get me mad, but he was right in a way. Firefighters have to always think big. Expect the unexpected and be ready to handle the big ones. If you do not have the passion, the willingness to give the big ones everything you have, you do everyone a favor if you don't show up. Every firefighter is counted on to know their job because we have to depend on eachother especially at the big ones.

Pictured here is a residential structure fire, that's me in the red helmet first on the line the crew is behind me flaking the hose, my best pump operator ready to send the water. We entered from around the rear gaining entry into the second floor and did a hell of job helping to extinguish this one. It was hot for sure, the knees were feeling it, zero visibility and the crew was an awesome team. Definitely one of our war stories.

A Firefighter's Pride

Firefighter's Pride
Firefighter's Pride

Pride and Passion. How can you not be proud of being a firefighter when every challenge you accept is important. Some calls are long, some calls are routine and the clean up, truck check and paper work takes longer than the investigation.

In the photo here I am overseeing the final wet down phase of a brush/grass/woods fire that lasted for hours until the widespread area fire was extinguished, hot spots checked and wet down and all areas surrounding even if not involved were wet down too.

Firefighter Rookie Days

Firefighter Days
Firefighter Days

In this photo I am still like a Rookie with three years in compared to those who had 10 or 15 years in and were still fighting fires. I listened to every war story. Every funny, sad, crazy story that they had to tell. It's hard to believe I am the one telling the war stories now. Every time one of my Rookies gets to go on one of "those calls" I tell them - now you have earned yourself a war story of your own. They love that. Over the years it's been fun hearing them tell some of them to the next generation of new guys.

Incident Command Structure

Incident Command Fire Chiefs
Incident Command Fire Chiefs

When I started out in my firefighting career, the Chief or Deputy Chief was the boss of the scene pretty much. If you needed to report something while fighting a fire we just called to Chief 46 and gave our report.

Today the firefighting world has changed dramatically. In a good way. There is more structure to the response system and all firefighters learn pretty much the same parameters. Today your Chief or the guy in charge is the Incident Commander. Now we call out to Incident Command to give our report. Or the interior guys if the fire is big enough will call to the Operations Officer to give their report. The Operations Officer will report back to the Incident Commander.

In order to comply with and learn all these new rules I had to go to ICS 100, 200, 300 and yes I have completed ICS 400. NIMS 700 and NIMS 800. Now when you go to the Fire Academy the basic ICS courses are included, no such thing when I went to fire school at all. As you move up in rank, or grow with your experience need you can take the advanced courses important for Fire Officers in the fire service today.

In the photo is Fire Chief Barry Rashkin who respected and integrated the Incident Command System into every call regardless of the size and scope of the emergency.

Loving My Job

Loving My Job
Loving My Job

It's the hardest, most demanding, challenging and pretty dangerous profession. I was told it was only for men. I was told, well actually I was told to get lost at first. I was told I couldn't hack it and truthfully, I didn't really know if I could.

But something inside me thought, hey I'm sure I could at least hook up a hydant.

And then I went to the Fire Academy for Firefighter I. That first Live Burn. My first thermal balance with the smoke hovering over my head. The first time I got to be the nozzle guy.

I knew then that I loved it. And I still do.

Pump Operations

Pump Operations
Pump Operations

My first Fire Chief was very proactive, believed in new gear, equipment, learning new techniques and believed strongly in training and education. He would periodically put out a sheet following a Fire Company meeting and encourage the members to sign up for more specialized courses they might be interested in. There was confined space, hazardous materials, pump operations and driver training, advanced SCBA courses - great advanced classes like those.

He was standing there watching what we were signing up for. I signed up for Driver and Pump Operations. He just stared at me. Yikes. He shook his head. I said Chief, I'm in the range of eligible to sign up for this, I'm really interested. Everything got very quiet. He shook his head and said, why don't you sign up for something you know, you might be better suited for. You can take an EMS or CPR course if you want. I was an EMT for 10 years on the local rescue squad just before I joined the Fire Dept. I looked at him. Oh he looked at me. I signed up for Pump Class any way. Did I mention that the same Chief was the Instructor for the course.

I will never forget the first time I drove to a fire call. It was a residential false alarm so the LT let me drive it on my first emergency run as driver/operator. The Chief came out of the house, saw me in the driver's seat and well, I thought we were going to have to call EMS. When we got back he called the LT in and boy did it get loud. The LT stood by me though, I did happen to be doing the best in Pump Class, logging tons of hours during drills and training and going out with Fire Officers and other Pump Operators every chance I got.

It didn't take me too long to get "Qualified", approved to drive and operate every apparatus in the station from our old engine to our 75 foot Mack Baker Aerial Tower. I love them all. I'm proud of them all. I always say if I have to be the Pump Operator, I want to be pumping the first due attack truck, that's where the action is.

Special Assignments

Click thumbnail to view full-size
In this photo I am on my way down into the storm drain.  I don't climb into the storm drain for just any reason.With police, fire and EMS on the scene assessing the situation I can tell you an important rescue is about to happen and I am always up for a rescueDown the storm drain are 10 tiny baby ducks that fell through the storm drain grate while crossing the street following Mama duck on the way to the nearby lake.  Mama duck was nearby quacking and squawking to us as loud as she could to rescue her babDown in the storm drain I was armed with technical rescue equipment that included a butterfly net, a bucket and my work gloves.  All 10 fuzzy babies let me scoop them up and place them inside the bucket, well two I had to convince when the tried to rOnce all baby ducks were in the bucket the Chief pulled it up with the rope we had attached.  I brought the bucket towards Mama Duck and tipped it slightly sideways and out popped 8 cheerful peeping and quacking little ducks that ran right over to Ma
In this photo I am on my way down into the storm drain.  I don't climb into the storm drain for just any reason.
In this photo I am on my way down into the storm drain. I don't climb into the storm drain for just any reason.
With police, fire and EMS on the scene assessing the situation I can tell you an important rescue is about to happen and I am always up for a rescue
With police, fire and EMS on the scene assessing the situation I can tell you an important rescue is about to happen and I am always up for a rescue
Down the storm drain are 10 tiny baby ducks that fell through the storm drain grate while crossing the street following Mama duck on the way to the nearby lake.  Mama duck was nearby quacking and squawking to us as loud as she could to rescue her bab
Down the storm drain are 10 tiny baby ducks that fell through the storm drain grate while crossing the street following Mama duck on the way to the nearby lake. Mama duck was nearby quacking and squawking to us as loud as she could to rescue her bab
Down in the storm drain I was armed with technical rescue equipment that included a butterfly net, a bucket and my work gloves.  All 10 fuzzy babies let me scoop them up and place them inside the bucket, well two I had to convince when the tried to r
Down in the storm drain I was armed with technical rescue equipment that included a butterfly net, a bucket and my work gloves. All 10 fuzzy babies let me scoop them up and place them inside the bucket, well two I had to convince when the tried to r
Once all baby ducks were in the bucket the Chief pulled it up with the rope we had attached.  I brought the bucket towards Mama Duck and tipped it slightly sideways and out popped 8 cheerful peeping and quacking little ducks that ran right over to Ma
Once all baby ducks were in the bucket the Chief pulled it up with the rope we had attached. I brought the bucket towards Mama Duck and tipped it slightly sideways and out popped 8 cheerful peeping and quacking little ducks that ran right over to Ma

Fires and Assignments

Firefighting
Firefighting

When the 911 dispatcher tones you out for an emergency, you really never know what you will get. You jump in the Engine or Ladder truck, whichever you are assigned to or appropriate for the call and get prepared. For everything. And anything.

Through the years I have learned to never, ever become complacent. Just because you get dispatched to the same commercial property over and over for a false alarm, doesn't mean that the next time it isn't really going to be a fire. Has it happened to me. Oh Yeah. Once at a senior complex with 100's of private apartments, nursing clinic area and attached buildings. Over and over, false alarms. Until it wasn't. Cigarette butt in the garbage pail and a nervous senior citizen turned into two adjoining apartments fully involved, heavy smoke through the attached hallways, evacuation of hundreds of senior citizens. Never get complacent I tell the guys.

Just about a year ago we were toned out for a CO alarm going off at someone's home. Our Chief and Deputy Chief were responding in their respective vehicles. Our first due engine with me in the Officer seat was on the way, the guys were getting the CO detectors ready and suddenly the Deputy Chief announces he has a fully involved second floor, flames showing side alpha and bravo, what!!!! The resident just thought it was her Carbon Monoxide alarm going off. You never know. Every time you get in the truck, you have to be ready for every assignment.

This photo collage includes some of my adventures, leaving the 2nd floor by ladder because the stairs were compromised and a Mayday was called, wrapping up a tractor trailer fire, preparing with my crew for some roof work assignment, my partner and me getting ready to grab a 2nd attack line off of the first due engine at a structure fire.

In The News

In The News
In The News

Firefighters are always in the News. On TV, Online, in the newspapers - fire crews racing into buildings saving lives, saving property, mitigating hazardous materials problems, rescues at motor vehicle crashes. How much I respect them all and know what they have put on the line.

I am always pretty amazed when I see myself in the News. Over the years I have collected dozens of articles, front pages photos and even video taped (well now DVR'd) the nightly news because, well I'm in it! Not just me. Me, my crews, my station, my fire officers. Me. Fighting Flames. Winning awards. On scene at bus accidents. Tractor trailer crashes. It's not conceit that I save this. It's amazement really. I didn't grow up thinking someday, I will be a firefighter. I had no idea I was even capable of it. I save it to remind myself of how much I put into something that means so much to me every single day.

I save it for my family who sacrificed so much so that I can do these things. Missed parties, late dinners, overnighters, all time that I chose to give, all time my family gave too.

Special Thanks

Special Thanks
Special Thanks

A very special thank you to my wonderful loving family who have supported me in my firefighter career and throughout my life every day. My daughters were about the age of my granddaughters now in the photo above when I started to love the emergency world.

Thank you left to right, top to bottom: Cindy, Kaitlyn, Elyse and Randy and Ashley.

I love you guys and share this with you.

Family At The Station

Click thumbnail to view full-size
When you love firefighting as much as I do, so much time has to be spent doing it. Responding to calls, going to training and taking some time away from the family.  Families who really support you love to come on down to the fire house and root you Even the fire chief takes a grandpa moment in front of our Engine proud smiles and lots of love shared in a place that means so muchWhen your granddaughter hops on the back of your Engine during the July 4th fireworks and roots you on, that's passion right there.I always start training the Rookies to drive early on in their career, it gives them more time to practice.  At home having a matching yellow rescue truck to my engine makes the family uniteSharing what you love whether it's the fun of the fire hose, washing the fire truck or showing off your family makes everything count even moreSparky the fire dog is part of the family too, the kids always want to know what we feed himMaybe the future Captain of East Windsor Fire #2, my granddaughter checking out my helmet to make sure it's ready to goThe littlest rookies start out with a yellow helmet, just like I did when I startedCommunity events, I can't even count how many of them I have attended and helped sponsor.  Local camps, National Night Out, Brownies and Daisies and Boy Scouts, oh my.All the photos are compliments of our unbelievably gifted and dedicated Fire Company Photographer Cindy.  I'm proud to say she is my daughter.
When you love firefighting as much as I do, so much time has to be spent doing it. Responding to calls, going to training and taking some time away from the family.  Families who really support you love to come on down to the fire house and root you
When you love firefighting as much as I do, so much time has to be spent doing it. Responding to calls, going to training and taking some time away from the family. Families who really support you love to come on down to the fire house and root you
Even the fire chief takes a grandpa moment in front of our Engine proud smiles and lots of love shared in a place that means so much
Even the fire chief takes a grandpa moment in front of our Engine proud smiles and lots of love shared in a place that means so much
When your granddaughter hops on the back of your Engine during the July 4th fireworks and roots you on, that's passion right there.
When your granddaughter hops on the back of your Engine during the July 4th fireworks and roots you on, that's passion right there.
I always start training the Rookies to drive early on in their career, it gives them more time to practice.  At home having a matching yellow rescue truck to my engine makes the family unite
I always start training the Rookies to drive early on in their career, it gives them more time to practice. At home having a matching yellow rescue truck to my engine makes the family unite
Sharing what you love whether it's the fun of the fire hose, washing the fire truck or showing off your family makes everything count even more
Sharing what you love whether it's the fun of the fire hose, washing the fire truck or showing off your family makes everything count even more
Sparky the fire dog is part of the family too, the kids always want to know what we feed him
Sparky the fire dog is part of the family too, the kids always want to know what we feed him
Maybe the future Captain of East Windsor Fire #2, my granddaughter checking out my helmet to make sure it's ready to go
Maybe the future Captain of East Windsor Fire #2, my granddaughter checking out my helmet to make sure it's ready to go
The littlest rookies start out with a yellow helmet, just like I did when I started
The littlest rookies start out with a yellow helmet, just like I did when I started
Community events, I can't even count how many of them I have attended and helped sponsor.  Local camps, National Night Out, Brownies and Daisies and Boy Scouts, oh my.
Community events, I can't even count how many of them I have attended and helped sponsor. Local camps, National Night Out, Brownies and Daisies and Boy Scouts, oh my.
All the photos are compliments of our unbelievably gifted and dedicated Fire Company Photographer Cindy.  I'm proud to say she is my daughter.
All the photos are compliments of our unbelievably gifted and dedicated Fire Company Photographer Cindy. I'm proud to say she is my daughter.

Hotel Fire Fully Involved On Arrival

Hotel Fire Fully Involved On Arrival
Hotel Fire Fully Involved On Arrival

Firefighter Books

There are some great books about firefighters, both fiction and non-fiction that really describe so well some of our day to day and special project assignments. How we blend firefighting into our lives and how it becomes part of our world.

From the history of firefighting to the new techniques in safety and survival, we are always learning, learning and learning some more.

I Want To Be A Firefighter
I Want To Be A Firefighter

A series for children about firefighters all over the world to spark some interest in the new generation

 
Firefighters: Their Lives in Their Own Words
Firefighters: Their Lives in Their Own Words

True stories from firefighters sharing their experiences both good and bad, happy and dramatic and how it changed their lives

 
Firefighters
Firefighters

The spirit, history and amazing growth of firefighting through the years

 
Street Smart Firefighting: The Common Sense Guide to Firefighter Safety And Survival
Street Smart Firefighting: The Common Sense Guide to Firefighter Safety And Survival

Fireground operations can become dramatic and deadly from one second to the next. Firefighter survival has come a long way.

 
The Firefighter's Workout Book: The 30 Minute a Day Train-for-Life Program for Men and Women
The Firefighter's Workout Book: The 30 Minute a Day Train-for-Life Program for Men and Women

Firefighters have to work out to stay in shape and keep themselves physically healthy, I do every day.

 

OK, Do You Think I Am Firefighter Crazy LOL!

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    • Cynthia Haltom profile image

      Cynthia Haltom 4 years ago from Diamondhead

      Excellent you truly are dedicated to you career. Thanks for sharing.

    • Bonfire Designs profile image
      Author

      Bonfire Designs 4 years ago

      @Aunt-Mollie: Thank you for saying that and for stopping by to share my story. Everyone should be allowed to give what they believe in their very best try - who knows what we all could accomplish!

    • profile image

      Aunt-Mollie 4 years ago

      You are an exceptional, courageous woman and I applaud your dedication to this noble field of service. What an inspiration you are to young women today!

    • Snakesmum profile image

      Jean DAndrea 4 years ago from Victoria, Australia

      Couldn't do what you do, but understand it. Once did a basic firefighting course and really enjoyed it, even though I lost my eyebrows! They have better gear now. Great lens.

    • Bonfire Designs profile image
      Author

      Bonfire Designs 4 years ago

      @anonymous: Thank You!

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      nice lens

    • Bonfire Designs profile image
      Author

      Bonfire Designs 4 years ago

      @webscribbler: Thank you for your cool comments and for stopping by to share some memories I remember when I joined the guys told me the laws were getting crazy because now we couldn't ride hanging off the back step of the fire truck any more because they dropped one guy too many on the road on the way to the call LOL - tiimes have definitely changed some

    • profile image

      webscribbler 4 years ago

      You and everyone else who has answered the calling is firefighter crazy. It takes a special kind of person to run into a fire or other dangerous situation...or face down angry pit bulls or bovines on fire. Like so many others here, I had two family members who were volunteer firefighters. They're both gone now but no doubt would have loved your Lens.

      My step-father's company let whoever got to the firehouse first, drive the truck (this was probably 40 or so years ago). You can imagine the crazy mad dash when the siren went off. lol

      I didn't realize you were a lady firefighter either until reading about being fitted for your turn-out gear. Love it. Girls Rule and so do firefighters. Stay safe.

    • Bonfire Designs profile image
      Author

      Bonfire Designs 4 years ago

      @Craftypicks: All firefighters are Brothers and that means since you are a firefighter family, we are all family together! Tell them to Stay Safe Out There

    • Elyn MacInnis profile image

      Elyn MacInnis 4 years ago from Shanghai, China

      Amazing story. Thank you for this lens and all you do!

    • Craftypicks profile image

      Lori Green 4 years ago from Las Vegas

      I am so impressed! I have 2 bothers who are Firefighters. You Go Girl.

    • Bonfire Designs profile image
      Author

      Bonfire Designs 4 years ago

      @john9229: Thank you, and thanks for stopping by to share with me

    • profile image

      hmommers 4 years ago

      Wow, this looks impressive with all the pictures you have added. Great!

    • Elaine Chen profile image

      Elaine Chen 4 years ago

      this is my first time visit a lens talking about firefighter; it is the great one :-) As a woman, you are the cool and smart firefighter.

    • profile image

      john9229 4 years ago

      Great lens! Nice reading your story. Full respect! :)

    • Blackspaniel1 profile image

      Blackspaniel1 4 years ago

      How necessary they are.

    • Bonfire Designs profile image
      Author

      Bonfire Designs 4 years ago

      @poldepc lm: Thank you so much for stopping by and sharing with me.

    • poldepc lm profile image

      poldepc lm 4 years ago

      great lens, thanks for sharing...

    • Bonfire Designs profile image
      Author

      Bonfire Designs 4 years ago

      @SandraWilson LM: He's got the passion too, volunteer firefighters or career are all the same - if you love it you are a real firefighter. Tell him I said to stay safe out there, keep growing and learning every experience! Thank you for your Blessing, I share it with your son.

    • profile image

      anonymous 4 years ago

      I commend you for being a fire fighter, you stay safe. My Dad was a volunteer fire fighter and I was very proud of him for what he did in the line of his duties.

    • PlethoraReader profile image

      Matthew 4 years ago from Silicon Valley

      I am a volunteer medic and I hugely support you and all your brethren. Blessed!

    • SandraWilson LM profile image

      SandraWilson LM 4 years ago

      Yes, I absolutely think you are a crazy firefighter, and you are firefighter crazy, too. My son is the same way even if he's only a volunteer firefighter now. He'll get off a 12 hour shift as an EMT and attend 2-3 hour firefighting meetings once a week for his town. Even though he's going to school to become a paramedic as well as working full time as an EMT and volunteering as a firefighter, this spring break he's using his time off to attend a hazmat class. He volunteers for any fire work he can. Even though he had to go as an EMT, he volunteered for the big fire that hit Colorado Springs last year. So, yes, I see the firefighter crazy passion in your lens and recognize it well.

    • Bonfire Designs profile image
      Author

      Bonfire Designs 4 years ago

      @CamelliaPenny: Your husband is a firefighter too, that makes us family because all firefighters are brothers in the hood! Tell him to stay safe out there and thank you for sharing with me.

    • CamelliaPenny profile image

      Perrin 4 years ago from South Carolina

      My hubby is a firefighter, and I am awe of those of you women who are out there doing this job!

    • Bonfire Designs profile image
      Author

      Bonfire Designs 4 years ago

      @LisaDH: Thank you for your awesome comments, I love that your father in laws helmet remains on display and his legacy lives on!

    • LisaDH profile image

      LisaDH 4 years ago

      I guess I wasn't paying attention when I started reading the page because I didn't realize you were a woman until I got to the part about getting fitted for your bunker gear. Then I thought, "Wow, a woman fire captain!" I don't know if that's unusual, but I think it's great!!

      My late father-in-law was a volunteer firefighter back in the days before the city had a paid firefighting department, and his helmet is still on display in the old firehouse. He's definitely the family hero. In my mind, all firefighters are heroes. You put your lives on the line every day to save ours, which is definitely not something everyone could or would do.

      Your passion for your profession truly shines through in this page. Thank you for your dedication!

    • Bonfire Designs profile image
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      Bonfire Designs 4 years ago

      @LiliLove: Thank you for your Blessing, every single one counts!

    • Bonfire Designs profile image
      Author

      Bonfire Designs 4 years ago

      @dustytoes: Thank you for sharing a little bit about my world, Florida firefighting sounds like a vacation to me but I know we face all the same kind of challenges everywhere

    • Bonfire Designs profile image
      Author

      Bonfire Designs 4 years ago

      @Mamabyrd: Thank you so much for your cool comments and sharing with me, your Blessing means double because you are part of the firefighter world, tell your husband to stay safe too!

    • Mamabyrd profile image

      Mamabyrd 4 years ago

      Absolutely love your firefighter lenses! I was an Army firefighter for 10 years and I am the proud wife of a firefighter.

    • dustytoes profile image

      dustytoes 4 years ago

      Hey, good for you! My son has been a fire-fighter in Florida for 10 years- he always says he couldn't handle fighting fires in the cold. Firefighter training and the work itself is so physically demanding that I give you tons of credit for doing the job. This page is so interesting and all those great photos are wonderful. I loved that baby duck rescue. You definitely have my admiration and respect and THANKS for what you (and all firefighters) do every day.

    • LiliLove profile image

      LiliLove 4 years ago

      You sure are :). I really enjoyed your lens. Blessed!