Showing posts with label firefighters. Show all posts
Showing posts with label firefighters. Show all posts

Friday, April 10, 2020

PTSD: If the leaders have not managed to take care of their it yourself!

Stop waiting for someone else to do it!

Wounded Times
Kathie Costos
April 10, 2020

Over and over again we read about responders not getting the mental health help they desperately need. After over 4 decades of research into what PTSD does, if the leaders have not managed to take care of their it yourself!

Stop waiting for someone else to begin taking care of you and the people you risk your life with. If they are still so ignorant they have not managed to provide you with the proper support, do it for each other. After all, peer support is what works best. It can only work if you learn all you can to be able to respond with facts, as well as encouragement.

The longer you wait, the more will die by their own hands because of what their jobs did to them!

You already their trust, because they trust you with their lives, as you trust them with yours.

Open your mouth if you think someone you know is struggling instead of fearing how they will judge you. If you still fear talking about PTSD, then that is your problem and you need to overcome it. Learn what it is and why you have it and then you will see that it is a price you are paying for surviving what you lived through.

Start helping each other heal! Contact me if you have questions 407-754-7526

Monday, January 20, 2020

Thunder Bay EMS responders getting more help for PTSD

'We see terrible things': WSIB budgets for Thunder Bay emergency services to increase by $1M

CBC News
Matt Vis
Posted: Jan 20, 2020
"It's really quite a vast array of calls. A lot of it is the unexpected or the unknown. A lot of times a lot of information isn't made available and in some cases it's a shock factor when you get there depending on what you have to deal with. Acting fire chief Greg Hankkio

Thunder Bay police and firefighters respond to a motor vehicle collision. (Heather Kitching/CBC)

Emergency services in Thunder Bay are putting more money aside for Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) claims, particularly related to mental wellness.

The WSIB allocations for the Thunder Bay Police Service, Thunder Bay Fire Rescue and Superior North EMS combine for a $1-million increase in the proposed 2020 city budget.

'We see some terrible things' Leaders of the emergency services leaders identify mental health, and particularly post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), as a major reason for the rise.

Superior North EMS chief Wayne Gates said PTSD is having a significant impact.

"We see some terrible things out there," Gates said.
read it here

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Titusville firefighters battle Lieutenant's house

Firefighters battle blaze at Titusville home of fire lieutenant

Florida Today
Tyler Vazquez
Sept. 4, 2019

Brevard county fire fighters responded to a structure fire just after midnight Wednesday in North Titusville.
Firefighters battle a Titusville blaze that broke out during Hurricane Dorian. (Photo: BCFR)

The home on the 4200 block of Pond Apple Drive belongs to a Brevard County Fire Rescue lieutenant who was notified of the fire by the PulsePoint app on his phone.

Video from the blaze showed smoke, flames and hose water being whipped around on gusts from Hurricane Dorian, which was crawling north off the coast of Brevard County overnight Tuesday into Wednesday.

He was able to make his way out of the two-story house unharmed, according to reports.

Fire investigators were still working to determine the cause after the blaze broke out or if it was directly caused by Hurricane Dorian.
read it here

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

While you were sleeping, Coast Guard was pulling bodies from the water

25 Victims Found, 9 People Missing After Diving Boat Catches Fire In California

Vanessa Romo and Merrit Kennedy
September 2, 2019

"This is probably the worst case scenario you could possibly have. You have a vessel that's on the open sea ... in the middle of the night." Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown
Updated at 1:31 a.m. ET Tuesday
Twenty-five people are confirmed to have died in the weekend dive boat disaster, according to The Associated Press, citing the Coast Guard. Nine people remain missing. A total of 39 people were on board the boat.
In this photo provided by the Ventura County Fire Department, firefighters respond to a boat fire off the coast of Southern California on Monday. The U.S. Coast Guard said it launched several boats to help over two dozen people "in distress." Ventura County Fire Department via AP

Lt. Cmdr. Matthew Kroll told The AP that at least 25 people died in the accident. Kroll said five victims have been found but their bodies have not yet been recovered due to unsafe conditions under the boat. He said authorities will continue to search overnight for the nine people still missing.

Five crew members were rescued, Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown told reporters at a news conference Monday afternoon.

The vessel was identified as the Conception, based out of Santa Barbara Harbor, and was on a three-day dive trip to the Channel Islands. It was operated by Truth Aquatics. Coast Guard Capt. Monica Rochester told a news conference Monday that the company has been in full compliance with regulatory standards.
read it here

Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Senate passed 9 11 responders fund forever

'Put down your swords': Senate passes bill ensuring 9/11 victims fund will never run out of money

NBC News
By Dareh Gregorian and Frank Thorp V
July 23, 2019

"I'm going to ask my team now to put down your swords and pick up your rakes and go home, and hopefully, we don't have to come back," victims' advocate John Feal told his fellow first responders at a news conference later. "What I'm going to miss the most about D.C. is — nothing."

Jon Stewart embraces a crying John Feal, the Sept. 11, 2001, first responder who led the organization pushing for the full extension of the victim compensation fund, just after the bill passed in the Senate on July 23, 2019.Frank Thorp V / NBC News

The Senate passed a bill Tuesday to ensure a fund to compensate victims of the Sept. 11, 2001, terror attacks never runs out of money — and that first responders won't have to return to Congress to plead for more funding.

The vote came after intense lobbying from ailing 9/11 first responders — including one who died shortly after testifying before Congress last month.

The bill, which was passed by a vote of 97-2, would authorize money for the fund through 2092, essentially making it permanent.

Before the bill's final passage, the chamber defeated two proposed amendments: One, from Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, would have restricted the authorization to 10 years; the other, from Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky, would have required offsets for the money spent on the fund.
read it here

Sunday, June 23, 2019

It is the reason I became a Chaplain back in 2008

The deepest dashboard

PTSD Patrol
Kathie Costos
June 23, 2019

Why do responders suffer a deeper level of PTSD? Is it because they are exposed over and over again to traumatic events? Or is it because they have the "one time too many" hit them?

After decades of research, it became clear that for responders, it is more about the strength of their emotional core that makes causes the hardest hit.

It is the reason I became a Chaplain back in 2008. I trained to respond to responders knowing that the very thing inside of them causing them to take on those jobs, also caused them the greatest harm.

Oh, no, not all bad news, because that same emotional core holds the power to heal.
This video was done for National Guards and Reservist...the IFOC gave me an award for it because they were using it to help police officers and firefighters. It is called PTSD I Grieve for that reason.
read more here

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Firefighter shot and killed while trying to save a life

Fallen Appleton firefighter identified as Mitchell Lundgaard

APPLETON, Wis. (WBAY) - The firefighter who was killed in a shooting at Valley Transit Center in Appleton has been identified as Mitchell F. Lundgaard.

Lundgaard was shot an killed Wednesday while responding to a call about a medical emergency on a bus.

"Mitch was married and a father of three young kids. Please keep him in your thoughts and prayers at this difficult time," said Appleton Fire Chief Jeremy Hansen. Hansen choked up as he remembered Lundgaard during a news conference Thursday.

Donations can be made in Mitchell Lundgaard's honor at The Friends of the Appleton Fire Department or mailed to:
700 N. Drew St.
Appleton, WI 54911

On Thursday, police and fire vehicles escorted Lundgaard's body down College Ave and to Brettschneider-Trettin-Nickel Funeral Chapel Citizens lined the street to pay their respects.
read more here

WBAY 2 News

APPLETON, Wis. (WBAY) - UPDATE: The Appleton Fire Department says the firefighter who was shot Wednesday night has died. The firefighter's name has not been released, but the statement says the firefighter had been with the department for 14 years.

Funeral arrangements are pending.

Fire Chief Jeremy Hansen and Mayor Hanna will make a statement to the media on Thursday at the Appleton Police Department.

A procession was held overnight in Milwaukee as the firefighter's body was brought to the Milwaukee County Medical Examiner's Office. Firefighters lined the street as emergency vehicles escorted the body.

Valley Transit tells Action 2 News that buses will be running today, but the transfer point will be at West Franklin St. and North Superior St.

Appleton police say an officer and a firefighter are among four people wounded in a shooting near the city transit center Wednesday evening.

Police say all those injured were transported to hospitals. We don't know their conditions. Each of the patients was accompanied by officers.
read more here

Friday, April 19, 2019

Missouri firefighters caught pushing around disabled veteran in wheelchair

Now that I have your was in a very good way~

Missouri firefighters push disabled veteran home after electric wheelchair battery dies

ABC 13 News
Thursday, April 18th, 2019

RAYTOWN, Mo. -- A group of Missouri firefighters lent a helping hand to a fellow citizen after his motorized wheelchair battery died, leaving him stranded far from his home.
Video shared to Facebook by the Raytown Fire Protection District showed three firefighters as they pushed the man's wheelchair down the side of the street as their fire engine followed behind them.

In an interview with Yahoo, deputy chief Mike Hunley said the man was an elderly veteran whose chair became trapped in muddy grass. By the time he was freed, the battery had begun to run low, so firefighters pushed him seven blocks home and set him up to recharge the battery.
read more here

Monday, April 8, 2019

Pickup truck turned into path of firefighters responding to emergency did not end well

3 civilians dead, 3 Phoenix firefighters injured in fire truck crash, FD says

Author: 12 News
April 7, 2019
A 6-month-old baby is among those who have died in the crash at 29th Avenue and Bethany Home Road, police say.

All three injured firefighters were taken to the hospital, two of them initially in critical condition but the police department says all three firefighters are now stable. One was released from the hospital Sunday afternoon and the two others will remain in the hospital overnight for precautionary reasons.
PHOENIX — Officials say two adults and a baby are dead, and three firefighters are injured after a serious crash that caused a fire truck to roll over in west Phoenix Sunday morning. The fire engine was on its way to an emergency fire call when it collided with a pickup truck at 29th Avenue and Bethany Home Road shortly after 9 a.m. Sunday, Sgt. Vince Lewis with the Phoenix Police Department said. The fire truck had its lights and sirens on. read more here

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Would you help them if they needed you?

Who are you driving away? 

PTSD Patrol
Kathie Costos
March 17, 2019

Today is St. Patrick's Day. Tradition says that he drove snakes out of Ireland. That got me thinking about driving other things away, like the people in your life. 

So who are you driving away? Are you pushing people away so they do not see you as being vulnerable? Weaker than they thought you were? 

What is it that keeps you from seeing that you would feel terrible if someone needed you, but pushed you away instead.

St. Patrick
St. Patrick, (flourished 5th century, Britain and Ireland; feast day March 17), patron saint and national apostle of Ireland, credited with bringing Christianity to Ireland and probably responsible in part for the Christianization of the Picts and Anglo-Saxons. He is known only from two short works, the Confessio, a spiritual autobiography, and his Letter to Coroticus, a denunciation of British mistreatment of Irish Christians.
Healing takes a triple play like the trinity. Mind-body and spirit. Leave one out and you will not heal as well as you would by taking care of all the things that make
Before the end of the 7th century, Patrick had become a legendary figure, and the legends have continued to grow. One of these would have it that he drove the snakes of Ireland into the sea to their destruction. Patrick himself wrote that he raised people from the dead, and a 12th-century hagiography places this number at 33 men, some of whom are said to have been deceased for many years. He also reportedly prayed for the provision of food for hungry sailors traveling by land through a desolate area, and a herd of swine miraculously appeared. Another legend, probably the most popular, is that of the shamrock, which has him explain the concept of the Holy Trinity, three persons in one God, to an unbeliever by showing him the three-leaved plant with one stalk. Traditionally, Irishmen have worn shamrocks, the national flower of Ireland, in their lapels on St. Patrick’s Day, March 17.
St. Patrick took care of poor sailors..what if they were too proud to accept his help? 

Well, that happens all the time...especially when you were the one who made it your job to save other people. Bet you didn't stop to see that it was the same career choice everyone you serve with made too. 

Would you help them if they needed you? Then what's stopping you from asking them for help to stay instead of pushing them away?

Don't give me the stigma crap. If you spent a fraction of the time you use to cover up the pain, on learning what is causing it, the stigma would be proven to be a grim fairy tale. It would not even exist.
read more here

Friday, March 8, 2019

Erik Sutton — a retired Superior fire battalion chief's Mom speaks out after suicide

Mother Speaks About Superior Firefighter Son’s Suicide; Dept. Holds New Support Training

FOX 21
Dan Hanger
March 7, 2019
But when his demons still ate away inside, he retired from the department after 20 years of service hoping for relief — relief that never came and only got worse after Erik’s father took his own life while battling a debilitating disease.

“He had Parkinson’s. He just couldn’t deal with being disabled anymore,” Cheryl said. “I think Erik blamed himself. He should have been able to stop it.”

Erik, their only child, would end his life just three months later.

SUPERIOR, Wis. – Cheryl Sutton, the mother of Erik Sutton — a retired Superior fire battalion chief – broke her silence Thursday about her son’s suicide to FOX 21’s Dan Hanger.

This, as the Superior Fire Department – for the first time – takes on special mental health training to help prevent another tragedy involving one of their own.

“Each step of his career, it was like, wow, this kid has made it. This is great. This is fantastic. But underlying it, we had no clue what was going on,” said Cheryl Sutton, Erik’s mother.

“Whenever that bell goes off, you put the personal stuff aside and you go on the call — and sometimes you have to deal with some pretty traumatic things,” said Suzi Olson, captain of the Superior Fire Department and president of the Superior Firefighters Local 74.

Olson says the old days of firefighting are long gone with traumatic medical calls becoming far too common.
read more here

Sunday, February 24, 2019

“It was the day of miracles,” said Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd

Pilot dies, family avoids disaster as plane crashes into home in Florida

ABC News
By Anthony Rivas, Jason M. Volack and Christine Theodorou
Feb 24, 2019
The plane crashed into the bedroom of 17-year-old Carmele Ngalamulume, pinning and trapping her against a wall until her brother, who was in the next bedroom, could run in and save her. There were three other children playing in the driveway of the house, according to Judd. Their mother was taking a shower when the plane dropped from the sky.

A nightmare came true for one family in Florida when a plane fell from the sky and crashed through the roof of a home.
The pilot of the flight was killed, but a trainee pilot and eight people inside the home all walked away with minor injuries.

“It was the day of miracles,” said Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd during a press conference, referring to the fact that everyone inside the house survived.

The twin-engine aircraft fell into the house in Winter Haven, Florida, at around 1 p.m. while its pilot, James Wagner, 64, and his trainee, Timothy Sheehy, were practicing simulated engine failure training, Judd said.
read more here

Monday, February 18, 2019

Firefighter almost died...until God showed off

Firefighter regains consciousness after near death from septic infection

Times Union
Mike Goodwin
February 18, 2019
"Y'all keep asking about the hand: the surgeon is coming to look first thing tomorrow morning. It doesn't look pretty though. I'd be amazed if he didn't lose fingers. But God has been showing off all week so....." Josh Woodward
ALBANY - The Albany International Airport firefighter who nearly died from an out-of-control septic infection, regained consciousness and is aware of his surroundings, his wife wrote on Facebook.

"He's awake, aware, extubated, conscious, forming his own unique thoughts, maybe a little confused, in pain, very weak, vulnerable," Chelsea Woodward wrote Sunday of her husband Josh's slow recovery. ".... it goes on."

"He doesn't remember much," she continued, writing that he was having some post-traumatic stress disorder from the tracheal tube. "He is really down and frightened about the road ahead of him."

Still, Chelsea Woodward calls her husband's survival a miracle.
read more here

Monday, February 11, 2019

Orlando Firefighters treated driver who hit them...and injured them

Firefighters, civilians in hospital after Orlando fire truck crash on I-4

Click Orlando
Crash marks second for department in 2 months, second in Central Florida Sunday
By Anna Johnson - Digital Journalist
February 10, 2019

ORLANDO, Fla. - A crash involving an Orlando Fire Department engine early Sunday morning sent four firefighters and two civilians to the hospital, according to officials from the department.

The crash marks the second for the department in the past two months. It's also the second on Sunday alone, after a vehicle crashed into an Ocoee Fire Department engine on State Road 429 just after 7:15 a.m., according to Orange County Fire Rescue.

The crash involving OFD's fire engine occurred on Interstate 4 near Orange Blossom Trail around 2:40 a.m. Officials said a vehicle driving at a high rate of speed crashed into the fire engine, which was stopped while assisting with another disabled vehicle.

Assistant Chief Dr. Hezedean Smith said the engine, which was angled to protect the disabled vehicle, was pushed approximately 8 to 10 feet forward from the impact of the vehicle.

All four firefighters at the scene were in the engine at the time of the crash. Officials said they immediately got out of the engine and went to assist the crashed driver, who had to be extricated. A passenger in the vehicle was able to get out without assistance.
read more here

Saturday, January 26, 2019

Homeless veteran froze to death at the age of 39

'Another fallen soldier': Tulsa wonders why a homeless vet died the way he did

Tulsa World
By Michael Overall
January 26, 2019

Holder spent two nights last week in a downtown homeless shelter, Haltom said. But he didn’t return last Saturday as overnight temperatures sank into the teens. Firefighters recovered his body the next morning outside the Daily Grill restaurant at the Hyatt Regency, where the 39-year-old veteran apparently froze to death on the patio.
He hadn’t been around for a while, long enough that people couldn’t remember the last time they had seen him. Several weeks, at least. Maybe months.

Then Zaki Holder showed up again last week, coming off the streets to get warm inside the Day Center for the Homeless in the northwest corner of downtown Tulsa.

The staff wondered where he had been but didn’t pry. Chronic homelessness doesn’t hit people in one long burst. It comes and goes and comes again.

Nobody was surprised to see Holder again.

“He was a familiar face,” said Mack Haltom, the Day Center’s associate director. “He was quiet. Stayed to himself. Never caused a problem.”
It was the second memorial service of the day for the Patriot Guard, Smith said. The first had been for a veteran who “joined the 22-a-Day Club” by committing suicide, he said. And as far as the Patriot Guard members were concerned, Holder was “another fallen soldier,” too, Smith said.
read more here

Sunday, November 25, 2018

Combat to chainsaws, veterans fighting fires

Veterans find community, hard work in rare firefighting crew

Associated Press
November 24, 2018
Of the 25 positions on the crew, 17 are filled by veterans, McGirr said. There are three additional openings, and McGirr said he wants to recruit female veterans, too.
SALEM, Ore. - After being in firefights in Afghanistan and Iraq, members of one of America's newest elite wildfire crews are tasked with fighting fires in rugged country back home.
On the U.S. Bureau of Land Management's only hotshot crew focused on recruiting veterans, members have traded assault rifles and other weapons of war for chainsaws and shovels. But, like in the military, they have camaraderie, structure, and chain of command. And the occasional adrenaline rush.
Crew superintendent Michael McGirr said he and other managers took then-President Barack Obama's initiative to hire veterans to heart."We felt it was important for them to transition back home," McGirr said.

"Being in a firefight is way different than being in a wildland fire, but both are mentally taxing," said Chris Schott, who served two tours in Afghanistan with the Army's 7th Special Forces Group. "In a wildland fire, no one's shooting at you, but conditions can go favorable to unfavorable very quickly."

The Lakeview Veterans Interagency Hotshot Crew, based in Klamath Falls, Oregon, received its hotshot certification after rigorous training and testing, the Bureau of Land Management announced last week. It's now among 112 elite U.S. wildland firefighting teams and the only targeting veterans for recruitment, the agency said.
read more here

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

The Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall Escort Apopka FL

Family Fun Festival
The Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall

Escort in Wednesday Nov 7th at 10am
Opening Ceremony Wednesday evening at 6 pm - AHS Band Tribute
Thursday and Friday - Opening a 9 am for school class visits
The Vietnam Traveling Memorial Wall will be open to the public from Wednesday 11/7 at 6 pm through Sunday 11/11 at 8 pm. It will be open 24 hours per day.

Sunday, October 21, 2018

From Firehouse to Homeless Veterans House in Santa Rosa

Veterans find new affordable housing in old Santa Rosa firehouse

Press Democrat
Will Schmitt
October 19, 2018
About 40 veterans have housing vouchers but cannot find a place to live due to Sonoma County’s shortage of affordable housing, officials said. “We need about a thousand of these,” Mayor Chris Coursey said at Friday’s open house. “Maybe not a thousand, but we need a lot of these.”
Kent Porter/Press Democrat
Traci Swank-Chrisco can’t wait to move in. Standing between the old Benton Street firehouse and a new apartment complex, she reminisced about being homeless twice in her life, including a stretch where she was raising her son. The Santa Rosa native and former Army private has a place with roommates now, but the second-floor apartment at the new Benton Veterans Village will be just for her when she moves in next week.

“It’s the first place that I’ve had since I got out of the Army that I don’t have to share with a lover, a child, or a roommate,” she said. “It’s monumental.”

The new homes for Swank- Chrisco and six other formerly homeless veterans are part of the $3.6 million Benton Veterans Village development, which came to be through a joint effort led by the nonprofit developer Community Housing Sonoma County. The new apartments were built adjacent to the repurposed Santa Rosa firehouse, which in recent years has served as a food pantry.

An open house was held Friday to celebrate the progress and the promise of the property.
read more here

Thursday, October 18, 2018

Oregon Firefighters targeted by armed arsonist

Oregon arsonist sets own home on fire to ambush

NBC News 
David R. Li 
October 18, 2018
Jacobs shot at firefighters as they approached, but first responders had no idea they were being targeted because crackling noises are common in house fires, McKee said.
An arsonist ambushed Oregon firefighters by torching his own house then shooting a rifle at the first responders, authorities said Thursday.
A man is dead after a structure fire turned into an active shooter situation early on Oct. 17, 2018 in Springfield, Oregon.NBC16
Lance Taylor Jacobs, 60, eventually turned the gun on himself and ended the brief standoff early Wednesday morning in Springfield, Oregon, police said.

After Jacobs sent firefighters fleeing for their lives, flames spread to three other homes in the 500 block of Oakdale Avenue, which is about four miles northeast of the University of Oregon in neighboring Eugene.

All four houses burned down but no neighbors, firefighters or police were injured, officials said. One round tore through a firefighter's pants cuff.
read more here

Sunday, October 7, 2018

Female Firefighter takes on PTSD and Ironman!

Woman to compete in Louisville Ironman wearing firefighter gear for PTSD awareness
By Fallon Glick
October 5th 2018

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- If you think competing in an Ironman is tough, imagine what it's like in full firefighter gear.

That's exactly what Diana Woolf will be doing at the Louisville Ironman next weekend. The 47-year-old has been a firefighter for 23 years, and she’s raising awareness about PTSD among firefighters.
“I've lost friends. I mean, if my husband wasn't a firefighter, I probably would have lost him,” Woolf said while acknowledging her own PTSD. “And myself, I contemplated suicide at one point.”

Woolf found herself in hole she couldn't climb out of because her PTSD until she started competing in triathlons. In a way, it acted as therapy. Now, the Village of Highland Hills, Ohio, firefighter is gearing up, literally, for the Louisville Ironman.

“The jackets, the pants, I wear the liners, which is a huge portion of our gear," Woolf said. "It's like a thermal barrier, but it also contains a lot of heat, which is what makes it most difficult. I wear the helmet, and then I wear the air pack on my back."

She'll be wearing all 37 pounds of it during the marathon portion of the Ironman. She hopes to shed light on the silent killer, because she said most firefighters aren't talking about PTSD.

“They're not saying they're having problems, because it is such a sign of weakness, which is the point of why I'm doing this ... to show that you're not weak," Woolf said. "You complete a full Ironman in fire gear, and you can have PTSD, so just come out and say 'I have problems. I need help,'"

Woolf said, statistically, more firefighters die of suicide related to PTSD than line-of-duty deaths.
read more here