To the Rescue

I’ve had several interesting conversations this week about the Fire Service and our members.

In a time of crisis, such as with the severe storms this past Friday; we are always front page. I don’t think most folks realize that we are on the job 24/7. Even the days when thousands of people don’t need us, there are still several hundred who do. We are always working … even on our days off.

One of the conversations I had was kind of centered around “helping our own”. Actually, the question “who helps us ( first responders ) ” was asked. Who comes to “our” rescue? My first though was “you’ve got to be kidding”. There are so many people out there working on our behalf … directly or indirectly. Really???  Like who?

I began to throw out names …. see how many you know and think of their contributions to the Fire Service before clicking on their name for a link to their bio.

Glenn Gaines

Harold Schaitberger

Dennis Compton

Ron Siarnicki

Tim Sendelbach

Bobby Halton

Dave Iannone

Billy Goldfeder

That’s a VERY impressive list …. each a huge contributor to the Fire Service and all advocates for our health and safety. These were just the names “off the top of my head”. I could have listed many more. How many did you recognize? Do you know the work they’ve done (and continue to do) on your (our) behalf? YOU SHOULD!

How about this one …. Shane Parkins.

Shane heads up the National Firefighters Endowment. Everyday, Shane is working to get firefighters the money and equipment we need to remain safe and effectively do our jobs.

Here’s a quote from their “about” page …
“National Firefighters Endowment is a non-profit, public charity with a driving passion to protect the lives of our firefighters. We believe that small actions can have life altering results and that the right equipment in the hands of our heroes can literally be the difference between life and death. “

Here’s the thing … Shane makes it EASY. Even now, he’s running a $5,000-$6,000 dollar equipment grant. All you have to do is submit a short video explaining your need and why your department deserves to be chosen.  Click HERE for full details.

Here’s another thing …. Shane thinks that WE are the heros. I hope he understands just how much his work means to us out on the streets. It’s not easy. We are good friends and talk often. I can attest to the fact that Shane often finds himself wondering how to fund “this” or “that”. I also know that many times, he often uses his own money to assure our Brothers and Sisters are well equipped.

You can help. You can help the National Firefighters Endowment help Brother and Sister firefighters all across the Country. It’s cheap, easy and full of reward.

Join the NFE Officer’s Club HERE

The National Firefighters Endowment Officer’s Club allows you to make a monthly donation as low as $10 per month. In return, you’ll receive 1 of 343 Challenge Coins and be entered into monthly giveaways. Hit the link above to learn more about the different ranks/levels within the Officer’s Club.

How about Bob Gard? Never heard of him either??? Bob is a Brother firefighter from South Dakota. More than that, he is the organizer of the South Dakota Firefighter’s Benefit to be held on September 15, 2012 in Sioux Falls.

It’s the first ever benefit of this kind to be held in South Dakota. Bob is bringing firefighters from all across the State together in an effort to help not themselves, but firefighters and their families from all across the Country!

“The SD Firefighter Benefit was created to bring firefighters from across the state together to raise money for organizations that are solely funded by donations, and work to better the fire service.  This year we have selected the National Fallen Firefighter Foundation find out more about this organization at,  the second organization is the National Firefighter Endowment find out more”

Can’t make it out to Sioux Falls?? Don’t panic …. you can still help. A $10 donation will get you entered into a drawing where the Benefit is giving away a custom Phenix Leather Helmet and 2 cash prizes ( $300 and $100).

The Helmet is AWESOME and even comes with a custom front.

Every $10 donation gives you another entry in the drawing.

More DETAILS by clicking HERE

You can use the secure “DONATE” tab located at the bottom right hand side of the link above.

It will be the best $10 you’ve spent …. hit the link!


Zach Green of MN8-FoxFire

Need another one???? How about Zach Green.

Zach is an “illuminating Genius” and the owner / President of MN8-FoxFire.

No, MN8-FoxFire is NOT a non-profit business but I can tell you for certain that Zach’s main focus is firefighter safety.

Beyond that, Zach and the MN8-FoxFire team have come to the aid of our Brothers and Sisters MANY times.

Raising money for the FDNY Rescue 2 MayDay Fund, Supporting the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation, The National Firefighter’s Endowment and the 9/11 Memorial Stair Climbs. He has donated product to our Brothers and Sisters in Detroit and MANY, MANY more worthy causes.

Rhett and I do some work for Zach and MN8-FoxFire but more than that, we are good friends. I say that because I know where his heart is …. with his fellow Brothers and Sisters of the Fire Service.

Now, Zach and MN8-FoxFire is taking it to the next level. Recently, he traveled to Canada where he had the honor of meeting Wayne Jasper.  Wayne is the Director & LODD Chairman of the CFFF (Canadian Fallen Firefighters Foundation).

Their conversation turned to the National Fallen Firefighter Memorial…. both Canadian and American. He was shocked to learn of the poor showing from Americans at the Canadian event and vowed to make a difference.

A LODD (Line Of Duty Death) doesn’t stop at the border … they affect us all … the BROTHERHOOD.

Read Zach’s post from his visit to Canada HERE

The result of Zach’s trip and talk with Wayne is that we are now organizing a bus trip to  Ottawa, Ontario for the 2012 Canadian Firefighters Annual Memorial Ceremony and Dedication of the Canadian Firefighters Memorial!

The event will be held at 10am on September 9, 2012. Our bus will be pulling out of Cincinnati, Ohio on Friday September 7th. We will make another stop / pick up in Detroit and return home on the 9th, following the events.

This is going to be a GREAT trip!!  By chartering a bus, we are able to make it affordable but we need your help in filling the seats. Help us show our Canadian Brothers how strong the Brotherhood is here in the USA. Help us show them that Brotherhood extends well beyond any border.

We will be staying in the Main Stay Suites which are located within walking distance of the Memorial and anything else we may need. We priced the room at 2 people per room but each room is a “suite”. They have 2 bedrooms, plus a fold out (so we can obviously sleep more than 2 per room if you have a group that wishes to do so.

To go, you MUST have a valid passport and you can NOT have a criminal record. As it stands now, if we get a min. of 30 passengers, the cost will be $530 each. That’s 3 days and 2 nights, travel and hotel. If we get 40 passengers, the cost drops to $470 and if we fill the bus at 50, the cost will be $440. The cost will also drop per person if you elect to sleep more than 2 people per room.

We only have a few weeks to hold our reservations so let us know your thoughts …. good idea or not. I think it is and I also think that if you go, it will be a trip you’ll never forget. We have a lot of “surprises” in the plans already.

Purchase your ticket HERE or call Robyn at 540-461-0954 for more details

So there ya have it …. a pretty decent list of members helping members. Just a few of the folks who come to “our” Rescue. Again I’ll say that this list could be MUCH longer and I apologize to those whom I didn’t include. I’ll add a note of THANKS to all of those (mentioned or not) who give of their selves  for our fellow Brothers and Sisters. If you know someone who fits this bill, be sure to thank them as well.

I’m back on duty tomorrow as Acting Battalion. I’ll check in as soon as possible but until then, stay SAFE and in House!

Captain Wines