I need a Priest !

LMAO … those of you who know me know how much of an understatement that is!

All kidding aside … I don’t really “need” a Priest, I just need the one I have to return home from vacation. Allow me to explain…

2012 has started out unbelievably AWESOME and today provided yet another early high point. I’ve been like a kid at Christmas waiting on a package and it was delivered to the Station today!  A brand new  Phenix  Leather Helmet !

This baby is SWEET !

She looks GREAT, is very comfortable and is the lightest leather helmet I’ve ever worn.

I can’t wait to put her into service!

That’s where I have a small problem … I always have my helmets “blessed” before placing them into service and I’ve decided to ask our newly appointed Department Chaplin, Father Sandy Webb; to do it for me. We’ve actually spoken about it before so I’m sure he will, it’s just that he’s currently out of the Country.

If anyone over in Jerusalem is reading this and bumps into Father Webb, please tell him to come home right away…LOL

Don’t forget to follow Ironfiremen.com on Face Book !

I’ve grown pretty fond of Father Webb since meeting him only last March. He came out and did a ride-a-long with our Battalion on St. Patrick’s Day and we all shared a meal of corned beef and cabbage at station #5.

I don’t know why but something seemed to “click” between the two of us. St. Patty’s Day always has me thinking of the FDNY and with a Priest in the house, Father Judge weighed heavily on my thoughts…

Read my post from that evening by clicking  HERE 

Father Webb just recently began acting in an “Official” capacity and has already been a strong presence in our houses. Our Chiefs have been on the job for years and didn’t make it out to shake the men’s hand and wish them a Merry Christmas. Father Webb has been on less than a year and Hell or high water couldn’t have stopped him from dropping by.

 He only responds to a scene if special called or if the incident pulls 2 alarms or greater.  We’ve seen him out on the street several times already as well.  We caught him out on a 2nd Alarm in this post .. click HERE 

So hopefully, Father Webb will return home safe and sound, we’ll get a blessing for my new Phenix and I’ll have her in service soon!

Some will call me superstitious and I guess I am. I keep family photos inside my lid and I always have a shamrock somewhere on my helmet.

Years ago, when I was a private, Scott Mutter (pictured center) and I were assigned to Engine #5. We caught a lot of work back then. Anyway, I had burned my old one off and came into work with a couple brand new shamrock stickers.

I put one on mine and the other on Scott’s helmet. I told him they were for “luck” and that they would protect us. He laughed, said he didn’t believe in that stuff and that I was crazy.

In no time, the red phone rang and we were out the door. First in on a well involved garage with an overhang (small shed roof). I had the nozzle and Scott was backing me up. Young and dumb, I pushed into the door and the shed roof collapsed on us. We were unharmed (other than my feelings), Scott quickly dug me out, got me up and we went back to work.

While taking up, he got to laughing and told me “see, I told you those damn shamrocks wouldn’t work. He damn near broke our necks!” Of course I explained to him how he had it all wrong … you see, if I hadn’t put those shamrocks on, it would have killed us! LMAO

What are your “firehouse superstitions” ?

So anyway, Im waiting on Father Webb!

I have already put on my MN8-FoxFire Helmet Band and Tetrahedrons

There she sits ..all new and shiny beside my current “New Yorker”

The only thing she needs other than the blessing is a front. In the past, I’ve always used a Paul Conway “insert” New York style shield / front. I’ve had that baby for a while now and the heat etc had cause considerable shrinkage … I don’t think it’ll fit the new Phenix. It’s time to retire that shield anyway … it’s served me well as my transfers have been numerous.

New front …. no problem right?? WRONG! It’s NEVER easy with me…LOL

Rhett had a huge hand in getting me the helmet and he also thought ahead enough to order me a front.

Not just ANY front mind you… a CUSTOM LEATHER Front from Box Alarm Leather, LLC !


I was speechless when I first saw it …. humbled, honored … AMAZED!

I don’t have it yet but the guys put this picture up on Face Book which allowed me  a “sneak peak”.

Box Alarm Leather is Firefighter owned and operated!

They specialize  in truly custom leather Helmet Shields, Radio Straps, Glove Straps and other leather firefighting accessories.

 Visit the  BOX ALARM LEATHER, LLC  website or find/follow them on Face Book

Of course Rhett also had one made for himself ……

Just look at the detail in these two pieces !!!  BEAUTIFUL !

“Beautiful” but another BIG problem…..   I can’t put this on my “first out” helmet. No way am I going to wear this baby into a fire and ruin it (and I’m not going to convert to a “yard breather” either..LOL).

I guess I’m going to have to get the Brothers of Box Alarm Leather to make me a 2nd front that I can wear everyday. Now, don’t take that wrong … all of their fronts are TOP QUALITY. What I mean is that I will have them make me something not “as” fancy.

I’m sticking with Box Alarm Leather here guys but I’m curious … what kind of  “front” / shield are you wearing?

Send me your pics and I’ll post an album of helmet “fronts” here on the site !

Rhett and I have a little more “shopping” to do as well and we need your help.

I told you in my last post how “work” is stacking up for  Fire Critic and Ironfiremen.com in 2012. We are “Becoming Infectious” !

We have a ton of exciting news to share with ya as far as where we will be and what we will be doing but we need to make sure we have all the details taken care of before letting the cat out of the bag.

Fire Critic and Ironfiremen.com NEED YOUR HELP !

We need a new “look”

We need a “logo” … a “patch” for our gear and uniform (currently we wear our Department issued Class A’s to special events etc). This goes hand in hand with the “Pride and Ownership” we’ve been talking about here lately (more on how and why in a future post)

I’m sure someone out there has the “artistic talent” we need. We need something that combines the look of both sites. Professional yet cool … VERY cool!

A Brother from our neighboring Salem Fire Department (Erin Barger of C-shift) made me this design for a t-shirt back in our “Melrose Misfits” days but we never followed through on the shirts.


Let’s see what you guys can come up with ! If we get a couple ideas etc we may even make a contest of sorts out of it and let our readers / fans vote on which to go with. We’re not looking for “freebies” here so give us your best shot …

Contact us with your logo/patch  ideas  HERE  or  HERE  

I’m gonna quit here for tonight. It’s been “one of those days” here at Lucky #13 . The good news is that we start 4 day break in the morning. I’ll update ya on more happenings etc throughout the weekend … until I get back to ya …

Stay SAFE and in House!

Captain Wines