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Where are the folks who work in Emergency Response?


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As there are no posts here yet, I thought I'd should be the fist one to utilize this sub-forum. 

I'm currently studying justice and policing, and hoping to work either as a K9 or Animal Control Officer. 

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Kian, it is a very specific request, so most folks won't respond as it doesn't apply to them. ? I used to work in a command and control centre for the fire service (taking the emergency calls, sending the appliances and managing the area coverage) but that was a decade ago now. Good luck with your studies!

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I was a volunteer firefighter and medical first responder for 14 years.

 

My first department was the best.  It served an island with a population of 1100.  Being on an island, they had to be totally self-sufficient, since mutual aid would take a long time to arrive, and would cost $1000 to call out the ferry in the middle of the night.  They had three tanker trucks, and could maintain a continuous firefighting water flow for hours.

 

We did a lot of medical calls, and got to do a lot of hands-on medical / first-aid stuff because we would typically be on scene for 10-15 minutes before the ambulance arrived.

 

My second department had a lot of potential, but the training officer didn't have his act together.  Three of us joined at about the same time, all experienced firefighters from other departments.  But, since we were new, we were technically "probies" for our first year and had to show up every week.  We were getting fed up with showing up and finding no training happening.  The training officer was complaining that no one showed up for training.  So I told him, "We three are here every week; so are you.  We all know stuff.  Let's take turns training each other, and invite the rest of the department."  The next week's included a notice that "There will be training tonight."  People showed up just to find out what that was about!  Within a couple of months, we had 18-20 people attending training every week.  Soon, members from other departments were asking to attend our training, because there was nothing happening at their halls.  Major success story, and that department is now the leader of a county-wide training program.

 

My third department, well, the less said about that, the better.  Typical half-assed rural department with no leadership.  After several years of trying to help the training officer, nothing was happening.  I thought about running for Chief.  But it would take ten years to turn it around, fighting inertia all the way, and I was already 65.  So I decided to retire instead.

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  • 1 month later...

I am in the middle of the "corrections" gig.  I know the politicians like to call this business "corrections", but it should be called "incarceration" as that is far more clearly the case. We don't "correct" anything or anyone.

 

I haven't had any problems where I work. 99% of the guys I work with are Native, my spouse is Native, and having lived here for some time helps tremendously.

 

It is disappointing to see roughly 1% of the population simply running in circles of the "judicial system" ruining everyone elses' lives.

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  • 1 month later...
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I was raised in a Volunteer Fire Departmen, became a Cub Scout at that same department. Later the Boy Scouts had a bigger role in the fundraising for the department. As an Explorer we were able to take classes and become Firefighters. I volunteered and according to the University of Missouri I've been Firefighter I certified since 1977. This was only the beginning of my activity in Public Safety and County Emergency Response with a leaning toward Hazmat. It took a long time for me to figure out my involvement with Public Safety caused me to abandon my wife and kids in their early years. During one of mine and Suzie's heated arguments, she asked: "What do I have to do to get any time or help from you? Dial 911? That was when I realized my marriage was in jeopardy, and I couldn't loose that. I also learned to say no, you'll have to find someone else to do that. I didn't leave the fire serves, as a mater of fact I eventually made it my job. Another huge realization was, if you're on a committee and someone asks you do do something, and you decline, but say; Hey if you can't find anyone, call me. They just stopped looking because they had you as backup. My Suzie has always looked at Public Safety as her other woman, and hated every minute of my volunteer time. She did ease up after I started getting a paycheck though. My last assignment was in 2012 as Captain of the Truck "Ladder 81" a 123 foot stick, county LEPC resource manager and Hazmat Team Coordinator. I've owned my own business teaching Cargo Tank Emergency Response since 1999 and I'm looking to wind it down in the next two years or so. Teaching Hazmat has taken me all over the USA, and abroad. I manufacture response tools, and cargo tank training equipment that is sold globally. I'm ready to let all that go, and just be the Old Gal down the street, or in the camper.

 

When someone thanked me for my service, I returned a gracious You're welcome. I gained more then I gave, and trust me I gave 100%. It was the tax payers who educated me, by paying for the classes and workshops I attended. The most important thing I learned from responding to 911 calls, no matter how bad my day is going, someone is having a tougher day than me. I loved being the first person to make their experience get better, and began the recovery of normal. I learned to care for others regardless of their station in life. The Scout Oath as much as my Fire Academy Oath kept me true.

 

On my honor I will do my best, to do my duty, to God and my Country and to obey the Scout Law; To help other people at all times. To keep myself physically strong mentally awake and morally straight.

 

Best wishes, stay positive, and safe

 

Mindy???

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  • 2 weeks later...

I am a police and fire commissioner and a former volunteer firefighter. I love our first responders and am so thankful for them (you) all! ❤️

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wow i really impress and proud to read  some of the job statues of soon of you wonderful ladies and men. I was wondering if any of you ever get or having gotten harsh. esp V. Michelle that a huge responsibility.  

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  • Admin

It's been a bunch of years, but I was a reserve police officer for 21 years.  Worked in the field for most of that time, and did a little of everything except traffic enforcement.

 

Carolyn Marie

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@Ellie JeanI always wished I could be a smoke jumper, but being scared of heights ? and living in the Midwest kinda took me out of the running. @Carolyn Mariethats awesome! My wife is an auxiliary officer. It’s pretty cool. Thank you all for your service ?❤️ @Lexi Cthank you ❤️ If you’re asking has the job hardened anyone? Some people can get that way after a while because of what you see and deal with. As a fire fighter, that never happened to me. I grew up in a police family so I was kind of accustomed to things already. As a commissioner, we mainly get the best side of emergency services. We work directly with the chiefs and are responsible for hiring, promoting and disciplining police officers and firefighters. Fortunately, the latter is rare in our city. Not a meeting goes by that I don’t get choked up or close to it by simply being there, having this privilege to serve our cops and firefighters. It’s a great honor to serve these people who put their lives on the line every single day for us. I really have a heart for them ❤️ 

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  • Forum Moderator
19 hours ago, Ellie Jean said:

I was a wildland firefighter for five years

Ellie, my fire service was here in the mid-west aka Missouri and Indiana mostly rural and suburban. One of the things we say about the City of Westfield Fire Department is; "We're where the corn meets the city." when I was hired the town had a population of 10,000 and today it's 46,000+ and we're really waiting to see what the new census reveal. As for you being a Western Wildland Firefighter for five years, they are the bad asses of the fire service and depending on your age, you should be employable in any fire/ems/police department as long as you're ready to back through the academy process. I'm real proud of the Public Safety attitude on LGBTQ issues in the past decade. Big cities are like dinosaurs and don't take change very well, the metro suburban departments are more accepting with progressive views. 

 

Like @Vanessa Michellesaid, I'm always proud to be with the folks of Public Safety.

 

Mindy???

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Thank you for your service everyone, I am proud to say I was firefighter for 29.5 years. Unfortunately had to retire early due to the mental and emotional toll, 1 of the best discussions I had in the last couple of years. But I still loved my job and the people that I worked with.

hugs

Jocelyn

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@Jocelyn, thank you for your service as well. 

 

Fortunately for us who have seen the harshness of life and death during our service in Public Safety, we can openly talk about our need for therapy. The stigma is being eased, and leadership is trending to Firefighter Behavioral Heath. It's sad that the number one cause for retirees deaths is suicide. We as a Brother/Sisterhood need to stay engaged with our retirees reminding them they are still valued and worthy of who they are. 

 

I wish the emergency services would look a service the same way the Marines do. "Once a Marine, always a Marine." Once a Firefighter, always a Firefighter" or "Once Police Officer, always a Police Officer".

 

Best wishes, stay Positive, and Safe

 

Mindy???

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Thank you Mindy, I agree that we need to stick together and support each other. We need to openly share our hardships so that maybe someone else will not feel so alone. thank you for your support. Unfortunately I have not come out to my fire fighting family and have had little contact due to COVID-19 happening shortly after I retired. working towards living life in the open.

stay safe everyone

hugs

Jocelyn

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My co-workers and I have discussed on many occasions the change in our characters and personalities due to working in our environment. I haven't dealt with the rawness life can throw at one, but I deal with the people who initiated that rawness, and it most certainly has a deleterious affect. We as a whole become much darker people; attitudes towards others, life, humour, perception, and most problematic; interactions, or caring.

I was in the airport getting ready to come to Chicago for my surgeries when a sanctimonious '70's something female approached me (I was all by myself at the farthest point from anyone as I don't like crowds), specifically came 75-feet just to tell me, "excuse me but I see you're not wearing a mask". I had been staring into space, lost in my thoughts when my mouth kicked in to overdrive and responded for me, "quit harassing me, shut the f&&* up and go away". Ten years ago this would never have happened, but being around the dregs of society have peeled away the layers of civility to the point I police my mouth by waiting for a half second before responding to someone. Poor timing on this female.

I have drifted away from many people I once knew because I simply no longer know how to relate to others who don't know what I do about the black aspect of human beings.

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  • 4 months later...
On 1/20/2021 at 9:38 PM, Ellie Jean said:

 


That's a big part of the same reason that I quit. Part of me kinda hates myself for that. I saw a lot of messed up stuff over the years. Still have nightmares occasionally. Full of charred corpses, some of them human, some of them animal. Some of them children; vehicle extrications were the worst part for me; a lot of the time it was just cutting a dead body out of a car, usually because of a drunk driver. I was a firefighter in the middle of Alaska though; I've only lived in the Lower 48 for a few years now. Back in Alaska the DOF did a little bit of everything; wildland, structural, search and rescue; especially where I lived because there was no one else around for hundreds of miles except for us. A lot of us were just alcoholic, pothead grunts trying to get a good paycheck; it always kinda annoyed me for some reason when people thanked me for my service, like I was some kind of hero or something when I was just a guy trying to make a buck like the rest of them.

I can relate.  I never cared, and certainly never sought thanks, praise, or other social accolades for a job I was paid to do.  I always performed my job responsibilities to the best of my ability.  The presence or absence of social accolades never impacted my work ethic.

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  • 2 years later...

Been in fire and ems for over 30 years. It takes it toll on you but it also makes you who you are.  Still doin it and loving it. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Well, heck. I did not even know this section (Emergency Responders) existed, not having scrolled down the forum this far. So buckle-up, and get ready for the ride.

 

I come from a police family. Dad was a detective with a large metro police department. I became an explorer scout with our state police (where ethics and honesty were deeply instilled in me by example, it was my privilege to be around such forthright men of integrity, and all the since because Dad was an abusive drunk), joined the military at 17, and when I got out, worked security until I got hired on as a road deputy for a rural county, attended my first police academy, and then spent the next 18 months working with an FTO to become solo qualified. Longer ago than I care remember!

 

I'll attach a photo of my (then male) self, as I was heading out on patrol one day (the building in the background was the rear of the courthouse and where the jail entrance was, but that is off camera). Our department budget was really poor, and the patrol car I was assigned solo was an ex-state police car with very high miles and falling apart. You won't be able to tell from the photo but the radio antenna on the light bar rack (in the center) was being held on by duct tape.

 

I spent a few years there and laterally transferred to a much larger police agency, spent further years there on the street and finally ended up as an investigator for a large district attorney's office, where I spent yet further years (for personal protective reasons I am not disclosing how long I spent at any one place here). I got burned out by the sort of things one sees in such a job and has to deal with, plus having to deal with all the politics was no picnic. Plus, there was this nagging (and I don't mean that negatively) femme stuff going on inside me, and I knew it would never work for me to transition there. 

 

So I shifted gears and became a cop at a university with a large hospital and a level one trauma center in it. I loved it, being back face-to-face with the public again and at a place where one could really make a difference, primarily because of the hospital setting. I even found myself volunteering in the emergency department regularly during one of my days off every week (my coworkers thought I was nuts), finally realizing that I would have been much happier had I worked in healthcare from the very beginning. Too late by then though.

 

The ER folks would have been okay with it, but my cop coworkers and supervisors never, never, never in a million years would have supported my transitioning there. So I took all the legal experience I had and became a paralegal, where I was told I could transition but was lied to. I lost my job over it and transitioned anyway.

 

Fast forward to my de-transition. To make an already long story short, to avoid my real self I became employed by a private  military contractor. And when that contract ended, I still felt lost, obviously because in doing all of this (for practically my whole darn life), I had been trying to run away from myself. Which is impossible in the end. Damn but that took me a long time to learn. And this is why I never should have sought out such LEemployment in the first place. Sure I could do the job, and do it well. And I genuinely cared about people and was honest to a fault. But my reasons for being there in the first place were wrong.

 

Being at loose ends though, and still knowing that I had valuable skills to contribute (even if my gender issues were still all screwed-up), I became a contract undercover operative with a federal agency. I was assigned to domestic terrorism investigations.

 

And that was the very ultimate in trying to submerge my feminine gender, because working undercover (as an apparent 100% male) one must convincingly adopt a completely different personality (to have any chance at building rapport and relationships with suspects) and a completely different background (legend), name, and everything else imaginable to go along with it all. Had these people known I was trans, or that I was LE connected at all, that would have resulted in my death.

 

So you had better believe that everything I had went into playing the role. And anything femme inside me was so far away that I could not even feel it anymore. Because my life depended on it. Better to leave certain details vague on how long I did this, or really much of anything else about it. But this (and the private military gig) is where the worst of my PTSD comes from. Because, my God, when it came to being UC, the sorts of folks one has to be around, 24/7 sometimes, and as if you are one of them... as if you are just as callous, selfish and evil like them... can you imagine? I did not do this for the money. I did it to try and keep innocent people safe. And to keep street cops safe. By providing intel from the inside. That was all I cared about. And in the end, I simply cared too much.

 

So that's my crazy story. I would have chosen a very different path back when I started had I known back then what I know now. But God bless our first responders, and all of those putting themselves on the line for others. 

 

Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends.

 

CCSO 1a.jpg

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  • 3 months later...

Hi all,

I have been involved in Emergency Services in various capacities over the years. Mainly Comms, but also Rescue and Command. I am currently Deputy Captain for Citizens Radio Emergency Services Teams here in the Northern Rivers region of NSW, Australia. I am also attached to the Specialist Comms Team of our regional State Emergency Service. Worked in Fire, Surf Rescue, SES and Police over the years. Currently working on a backup Comms project for when all else fails.......Jo

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  • 2 months later...

I was in the US Army Military Police Corps from 10-11-1984 to August 11, 1995, becoming a sergeant during that time. 

 

I left the US Army to get married and to attend college at Ohio State University but before I finished my degree in business I took a job as a police officer for the city of Columbus, Ohio and proudly served there until retiring on 4-11-2011 due to a serve in the line of duty accident on a police mountain bike chasing a shooting suspect I witnessed shooting two other people. Two surgeries not the be paralyzed from the waist down, and two right shoulder surgery reconstructions and one left shoulder surgery reconstruction later here I stand in heels and pearls and smiling. 

 

Now I am just a retired divorced and completely happy cross dressing rural farm owner! Yay I survived and made it to my happy heels, dresses, wigs, makeup, and accessorized lifestyle. 

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  • Forum Moderator
2 hours ago, Willa Kissing said:

I survived and made it to my happy heels, dresses, wigs, makeup, and accessorized lifestyle. 

That’s as it should be Willa,

Making It to your happy place, and cultivating a new you. 
 

Best wishes, stay positive and motivated 

 

Mindy🌈🐛🏳️‍⚧️🦋

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I started out as a volunteer firefighter and EMT in 1976. Paramedic in 1979, career fire and EMS, attained the rank of lieutenant. Resigned to go full-time in nursing. Still keep my national paramedic certification active. Lots of emergency/disaster response, mass casualty incidents, FEMA stuff/disaster planning, especially emergency department/hospital operations.

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I was a military police officer/infantry for 11 years. I have responded to all kinds of calls. The weirdest one was when I was in Iraq and a local national walked up to the gate and said the devil wanted him to come. I escorted him Office of Special Investigations OSI which is equivalent to FBI. I guarded him and after a while we escorted him off the premises. I have also been a Law Enforcement Animal Control Officer for Humane Society of Pikes Peak in Colorado. I have been to a lot of animal abuse and neglect calls. I did that for a year and was fired because it was a controversial call and didn't get a warning or anything they just flat out fired me. 

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On 2/2/2024 at 1:38 PM, Mmindy said:

That’s as it should be Willa,

Making It to your happy place, and cultivating a new you. 
 

Best wishes, stay positive and motivated 

 

Mindy🌈🐛🏳️‍⚧️🦋

Thank you, Mindy. 

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