FDIC 2013 is over. It was another great conference and time getting to be around like-minded firefighters from all over the world. FDIC is the greatest and best conference in the world but even using those words do not feel like justice enough to describe something so great. This years FDIC all started actually last year when I put in to teach my first ever 4 hour pre conference program.
Monday at FDIC was all teaching for me. I got to present my 4 hour class “The Medical Mayday”. The class focused on the fact that cardiac events are still killing firefighters and that all of our RIT training focuses on pulling people out of buildings, not the continuation of care after the firefighter has been pulled from the hazard zone. It also focused on the fact that firefighters are unique patients, and some talk and discussion about injuries on the fireground and some rehab and prevention measures. It was supposed to have a practical component along with it but there was a small mix up in that area, but that will NEVER happen again. Even with the mix up felt it went great! The preconference programs are not ala carte like the regular class room sessions. The students who wish to attend sign up for the class prior to the conference so the fact that 30 people felt like this was good enough to take prior to the conference made me feel awesome. I got great reviews and everyone really seemed to enjoy the class.
Here is the FDIC coverage of my class: http://www.fireengineering.com/articles/2013/04/firefighter-training-at-fdic-2013–medical-mayday.html
Tuesday I took no classes and had no teaching engagements so me and my brother decided to check out the NCAA Hall of Champions. Little did we know that we would find an inspiring story inside these walls.
This young man wanted to be a firefighter so bad he chose his college athletic career location-based on a volunteer fire station! Talk about inspiring most college athletes are just looking to go to the biggest school for a championship and move on the pro’s. Instead this guy was looking at a career first.
That brings us to Wednesday which is becoming my favorite day of the conference. I used to always skip opening ceremonies but the past few years I have gone and I have never regretted it. It starts with bag pipers then the presentation of the Ray Downey Courage and Valor Award, followed by a usually AWESOME speech by Bobby Halton, and a key-note speaker.
This year was no disappointment! You really need to log onto Fireengineering.com and see the video of opening ceremonies but here are some articles highlighting what was said.
Again I can not stress enough the power and moving experience of what FDIC Opening Ceremonies is. Even if you can never ever go to FDIC you should live stream it online when it is going on, or watch it on video. Also share it with your crew it will be worth it.
After opening ceremonies the rest of the day was spent taking classes, all of which were great. Then my favorite social event of FDIC The FOOLS Brotherhood Bash took place on Wednesday night but first we got some dinner at Hooters[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=g6zurzfLCF4]
Not very many other places in the world does that happen, yet it is a common occurence at FDIC! The Brotherhood Bash was made even more cool by the fact that this year a local band from Richmond Va was headlining Rosie Soul and The Rock and Roll Cowboys!
Thursday brought one more classes but also exhibits!
Also the guys from the movie BURN http://www.detroitfirefilm.org/ where on hand.
review from BURN http://averagejakeff.wordpress.com/2013/04/10/burn-in-richmond-va/
This is Lucas Oil Stadium and it is just a small portion of what FDIC offers for exhibits. My complaints about the exhibits remain the same from last years FDIC review that you can see here http://averagejakeff.wordpress.com/2012/04/24/fdic-2012-review-part-2/
Also on Thursday I got to see some of the yearly Firefighter Combat Challenge[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tco6vACpDhE]
This is an awesome event, I have never run one but have watched several. If you have the chance find one near you and go out and see it!
Thursday night also brought about the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation Stop Drop and Rock and Roll party in the Indiana Roof Ballroom. We had never been before. IT WAS A BLAST!!!!! For $15 we had some great food, good music, AWESOME fellowship with other brother fireman and it all goes to the NFFF www.firehero.org I know I will be hitting this event up again in the future, and recommend you do the same!
Friday morning I boarded a plane headed for Charlotte NC and my brother boarded a plan set for Cleveland as we could not get the same flight and our FDIC was over.
It was another great trip as you can see by the review, here are just a few of the people I got to see again or meet for the first time:
Rhett Fleitz www.firecritic.com
Willie Wine www.ironfireman.com
Ben Peetz http://notjustanotherfire.net/
Mike Smith http://boronextrication.com/
Paul Hassenmier http://firstduetackle.com/
The Owner of Hero Rush http://www.herorush.com/
Brian Brush www.fireservicewarrior.com
Ryan Pennington http://viewsfromthejumpseat.com/
Everyone at Fox Fury lighting http://www.foxfury.com/index.php
If I left anyone out I apologize.
Like I said it was a great time, and I can’t begin to express how great and powerful this conference is.
As usual thanks for reading, spread the word, and STAY SAFE!