This is gonna be a long one folks so get your coffee, your breakfast, get in the comfy chair, etc.
So we arrived back from FDIC 2012 on Saturday evening, well some of us did. You see while waiting at the Indy airport the airline we were traveling on had oversold the plane. So they offered up 2 not one but 2 round trip tickets to anywhere they flew if someone would bump themselves and take a later flight. Well in 2013 my wife and I plan on running the Disney World Marathon in Jan. and taking our kids there in July 2013 so she jumped at the chance and now our flights for the 2013 Disney World Marathon are paid for! The only problem is that she ended up having to wait 4 hours for another flight and did not get back into Richmond Va until midnight. A sacrifice but WELL WORTH IT!
But let’s go back to the Tuesday of FDIC our group Me, Karen my wife ( Author of ICS for EMS, Emergency Operations Asst. Manager for the Virginia Office of EMS, and President of the East Hanover Vol. Rescue Squad), My father in law Frank (HMERT coordinator for the Virginia Office of EMS, Life Member of the West End, and East Hanover Vol. Rescue Squads, and holder of several officer positions in both of those organizations, My Brother Danny ( Fireman City of Richmond Rescue Co. 2, Member of the Central Virginia Tech Rescue Team, and Member of the Mechanicsville Vol. Fire Dept.), and making his first trip to FDIC my Dad Ed “The Mole” Owens (Sergeant Stafford County Fire Rescue, Lieutenant and Life Member of the Mechanicsville Vol. Fire Dept.) all arrived at the Richmond International Airport and headed out to indy around 11. With a quick stop in Atlanta we got to Indy right around 4pm.
Since I had to teach the following morning I went right to the convention center with my wife for AV check. Once that was done we hit the town so to speak having dinner and drinks at Champions directly across from the convention center. While there we ran into Jonah Smith www.hosejockey.blogspot.com and Jason Jefferies www.workingthejob.com . After that we hit the Local 416 Fund Raising event at Rock Bottom Brewery had a few “Fire Chief Ales” then kinda called it a night.
Wednesday was of course opening ceremonies and in the past I usually never go but the past few years I have been really motivated to get up and hear some great speakers, boy am I glad I did Bobby Halton ROCKED THE HOUSE!
If that speech does not make you get motivated to train, and do the right thing then get out of the fire service right now cause you will never get it!
I had to leave before the Keynote to go set up my computer for my class. “Engine Company Emergencies” in my opinion was a huge success. I had about 70 people only 1 walk out, and a lot of positive comments. Sure some of it is simple, but it seems to me that those are the things that are hanging us up sometimes. The basics (hose line management, chocking doors, fire ground discipline, etc.) are a lot of the problem and things that we do not cover in our RIT training.
Before and after class I got to talk with Chris Huston www.engineco22.net and Brian Brush www.fireservicewarrior.com I regret that I did not get to hang out with them more but with so much going on with them and me we just kept playing “twitter tag”.
After my class I had the chance to take some other great classes the best was no doubt “Engine Company Operations: Gallons Per Second” With Chief Curt Isakson from Escambia County Florida. I will not spoil it for you, but take a class from this guy he runs his own site at www.countyfiretactics.com and it is all good stuff.
Also Wednesday night I had the chance to go to “Unplugged” With Jon Norman, Alan Brunaccini, and Bobby Halton. This “class” is really just a kitchen table BS session but I always get a lot out of it, and the messages and quotes you can pull from it will last you a life time!
Finally on Wednesday was the Fools Brother Hood Bash. To me this is THE event at FDIC music, beer, fireman, bag pipers what else do you need! After the Brother Hood Bash we headed back to the hotel for a “night-cap” and I am glad I did we ran into Rhett Flietz aka “The Fire Critic” www.firecritic.com and he honored me, my dad, and brother with his and Capt. Wines www.ironfiremen.com new challenge coin from NM Coin
Aren’t these things cool. To me it is an honor to get these as they didn’t have a ton to give out. Just another way Rhett has helped me out. he has sent product reviews my way, he was one of the influences I had for blogging, and he always offers honest opinion on a variety of topic. Plus he is always down for a beer and good time! Captain Wines is very similar I have only met him twice and while he may not even know my name he recognizes my face and always represents the highest level of brotherhood. Plus like me they are from Virginia, making our bond even one of State hood. These guys are class acts all the way!
Well I am gonna end this one right here, I have a lot more pictures to post and things to add about the conference. Also I am going to be having a giveaway very shortly so keep an eye out for that.
Be Sure to keep following along on twitter @averagejakeff and support all of the guys I mentioned in the post they are all doing great work and no matter the stance they take our goal is common, a better, safer, more educated, and more dedicated fire service.
As usual thanks for reading, spread the word, and STAY SAFE! Also stay tuned for FDIC 2012 Review Part Duex!