Odd job number five, adolescent firefighting

October 21, 2009 at 10:59 pm (Reporting)

Brian Shipley is a Howard County volunteer firefighter, he has worked at the fire department since he was a teenager and although he is not getting paid, he expresses the importance of odd jobs that have a long-lasting effect on the lives of young people.

“I first joined the Elkridge Junior Firefighters in 2000. I was a junior until I turned 16 and joined the Elkridge Volunteer Fire Department. Both of my parents and my grandfather were firefighters/ EMT’s so I was destined to become a firefighter.”

“I got voted into the department in October of 2004 and started taking Firefighter 1 not too long after that. I’ve been constantly taking classes since I joined. I’ve taken Firefighter 1&2, Rescue Technician, EMT, Hazardous Materials, Truck Company Fire Ground Operations, Fire Officer 1, and I’m currently enrolled in Fire Officer 2 and Fire instructor 1.”

“There is a lot that goes into being a volunteer firefighter, but it is all worth it. It is not the normal job that a kid does, but that is part of the excitement.”

“This definitely helped me mature as I was growing up. I was 16 when I first saved someone’s life and it was an eye opening experience. “

“I think it is very important for older teens to get involved in their local fire department. It will show them not to take things for granted.”

“Currently I am a lieutenant in the Elkridge Volunteer Fire Department. I am the officer in charge of the fire engine. I also work with the Rookie Program. The Rookie Program is what we call firefighters first year in the department.”

“I would encourage others to get involved by telling them what we do, and some of the stuff I’ve seen. They would have to come fill out an application, and get voted into the department. After that they would need to go get a fire department physical and then they can start riding and taking classes.”

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