Sunday, February 28, 2010

Last day of the cycle for A-Shift...See you Friday.

This is our last day this cycle. It's a lazy Sunday. We knocked out the usual chores and check offs this morning. The traditional breakfast was made and eaten. We ran a 18 wheeler vs. car with our soon to be additional crew at #5. Yes, the truck won.....They always do.

Next a trip to the store so Ex-Deputy/FF McDonald(our transplant for the day)could grab some dinner. We had chicken on the grill. For some reason he didn't cook pork.
Anyways, it was good.
Afterwards we finished watching those damn Canadians beat USA in hockey. What the hell, eh? It was a ok game. My favorite part was eating the Zombieland snack of choice...

Watch your back Little Debbie! Jerry and I can kill some Twinkies!
Speaking of killing.....Captain brought in another trophy for the wall. He says it is an elk, but I think not.

The Box is still out and has been most of the day. Coach and Franks are out there saving everyone who needs help, one at a time. The engine just returned from a report of a structure fire. When we hear "the house next to" or "in the 1600 block of..." its usually the real deal. Even as we climbed the hill and saw the orange glow, I have to admit I was thinking it was time to work and spotted my hydrant. I wasn't expecting the BBQ grill to be up on the front porch rocking some 2-3' flames while sitting on some rugs, but hey you never know. After covering it up and a quick public service of why BBQ grills should be used away from any type of overhang....we headed back home.
We hit 4-day break in the morning. That's all we have for tonight. Bevo returns next cycle. Congrats to Broadway(E5)and Tiffany again on their new addition to the family. Everyone be safe out there and lets go home in the morning....Goodnight.
P.S. 37 more days....

Friday, February 26, 2010

9A-Middle day

It's late, I am tired but here you go....
E9 is up to 5 runs, M9 just returned from the 6th. We had Z-man in EMT-I this morning and off to #2 for the rest of the shift. Bevo a.k.a. Christmas came in today to ride the Engine with Wheels driving the Captain. I mean Coach driving.
We did the usual first thing this morning by cleaning and checking off our equipment. Afterwards we finished our on-line classes, and we know when and when not to breathe airborne particles from our patients. We also know when to wash our hands!
FF Beans and Lt. Good O are on the box and have been attending to NW's ill citizens.

Yes it has been a busy day for the city. I am not sure how many times we were dumped, but we managed to get fuel and make it back for lunch, before dinner.
The engine got to run one with E5, Batt 2 and L2 today. Seems someone decided to go out while cooking on the stove. Thanks to the E5 noses they smelled an all to common odor of burnt food and made entry. Nice catch guys.

We had a couple of old faces to post today. Retired FF Kenny Walker came by today and brought us some scrupshious doughnuts. He told a few jokes and informed us of his time as a stand-up comedian in the Patrick Henry Hotel back in the day. Thanks for coming by. Yes that is Kenny in the pic. The guy is dropping some weight.

After another run to our local hospital, we stopped by to wake an old friend and give him a hug. Yes folks, Kill em' all Dixon! I am not sure if that is a twinkle in his eye or the deer eye transplant reflecting the flash. Either way it was an emotional moment for Dr. Death, Franks and I.

That's all we have. Time for bed. Stay warm out there and please be safe.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

A-Shift is back for another cycle.

We are back, Engine and Medic 9 are still is good. Our buddy, FF Noell is off today, but the rest of us are here. No exciting calls today. However a few updates....
We got our shipment of wood in to make the new table. Yes, the new station is going to have a larger crew with the addition of Ladder 5, part time Medic 101 and Battalion 2. So Captain Weeks and Lt. Brown from #5 are making a new table for the new #5. I believe they said it's going to be 16 feet long! Here is a shot of the soon to be 5-A crew unloading table pieces.

For the employees of the city, you can check out our new ladder on our city computers. It's in the building stage but looks very nice. I had a chance to swing by and snap a pic myself for those who don't have access to the other computers.

It rocks!
Other than the usual today, I had the opportunity to do a little Search and Rescue teaching down at the recruit school. We can't show their faces on the blog until they get out of training, so here is their gear at least. Thanks to Lt. Simmons from #2, Lt. Branch and FF Surratt from #6. It was some good training.

Well it's that time. The bed is calling. emergency is not the sniffles for 5 days. A GSW or a structure fire is. Take it easy tonight, Coach (FF Wheels) has football practice tomorrow. Big Bear needs sleep! I am on the box next all you want then.
Goodnight folks, be safe out there.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

I know, I am a slacker.

It's been a little busy around here. A-shift has been in crisis mode more times than not, the last few cycles. Thanks to grumpy Mother Nature and the snow she dumps on us, we have had the chains on the trucks quite a bit.

She had a pretty bad day last cycle. The wind blasted the back of the station all day until it blew out one of our bay door windows. I don't know why, but I had a saw in the Mustang. Along with some scrap wood in the basement and Zimmerman's "I can fix anything-anywhere" mobile repair station.....we managed to make a quick repair.

It could have been bad. The window landed right in the work-out area. Christmas could have been hurt, since he lifts weights almost daily!

We are sure glad that he is ok.
The repair was needed quickly. With that hole in the door, the temp dropped rapidly. It's been pretty cold here in NW. On the way out of the grocery store we found that folks are doing whatever they can to cut down on the cold air sneaking in.

Today....Captain Weeks is on Engine 5 and will be next day. He is getting a chance at some good old FF/Captain bonding time with the fella's at 5. 1Lt Gardner is on vacation and our good buddy Lt. Broadway went and became a daddy again today. Congrats go out to him and Tiffany!!!
That leaves me on the seat with Z-man backwards on Engine 9. We are lucky to have a celebrity driver tonight....Coach Wheeling is getting us there and if need be, he will be pulling the levers. If he does a good job, he is sure to get a Gatorade bath.
Some more good news is that she is back....

Still not 100%, but better than a reserve. We are glad she is back.
We are up to 4 or more on the Engine. A smoking furnace, a stabbing, one critical EMS call and some others have kept Engine 9 busy. With M.D. Franks running a local ER today and Coach Wheels farmed out to #2, we borrowed Medic 101's crew and a recruit with a RN student from Radford. They ran our Medic 9 until we could all reassemble. AIC (recently retired) Hank Pfister was on board with us today also. It was good to see him again. With that many people to feed, we made up a batch of spaghetti. I decided not to use the ground beef we bought last day.

Christmas and Z-man decided to play Frogger and run across the street and get some fresh meat.
That's all we have for today. No great action shots, other than our good buddies in blue.

Have a safe night out there. Don't forget your long-johns, or for you Christmas...your footie pajamas.

Good night.

54 days left

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Here is some of the information Zak needs to get out to everyone. Please visit: for all of the information. Thank you.

William E. (Billy) Obenchain, Jr. was a devoted Christian, husband, father, “pops”, son, brother, firefighter, and committed friend to many. Also, he was a career firefighter, who retired from the Roanoke City Fire Department in Roanoke, VA in 2007, and he faithfully served the Town of Vinton, VA as councilman for 16+ years, having been vice mayor for several years. Every single day for 9 years, he endured a rare form of lymphoma – Cutaneous T-Cell Lymphoma (e.g., CTCL) - that has no known cure. After a long, determined fight against the disease, Billy left us for his Eternal Home in Heaven on December 23, 2009.

During his illness, he was under the watchful eye and stellar care of one of the premier specialists in this disease, Dr. Elise Olsen of Duke Medical Center and Dr. Stephen Rosenoff of Blue Ridge Cancer Center in Roanoke Virginia. Billy also traveled, at the request of Merck Pharmaceuticals, to help scientists, researchers and others involved in drug creation to understand the plight of the CTCL patient.

It was through the grace of Our God, and the wonderful work of his doctors that he lived and loved for 9 years.

The first inaugural fund raising event for Steps4Billy is a 100 mile walk!
The goal is to raise $10,000 for the Duke CTCL/Cutaneous Lymphoma Research and Treatment Center at the Duke Medical Center. The efforts of this center allowed Billy to live many years after diagnosis.
Dr. Alice Obenchain-Leeson, sister of Billy and Dr. Carole Ann Creque, family friend, will walk 100 miles during the week of May 10 – 16, 2010 around the Roanoke Valley of Virginia. This event will begin in Vinton, VA, and traverse through places that were special to Billy to include his church, his hometown, the schools he attended, and all Roanoke City Fire Stations.
You can help the fight against CTCL, honor Billy’s memory, and show your support for our walk by sending a check or money order, directly to:

The Duke CTCL Fund

C/O Dr. Elise Olsen

(Steps 4 Billy)

Box 3294 DUMC

Durham, NC 27710

Or online to:

All donations are tax deductible and all contributions go directly to support Cutaneous Lymphoma research and patient care activities under Dr. Olsen’s direction.
Please contact us with any questions or requests:

Alice Obenchain-Leeson

Carole Ann Creque

Monday, February 8, 2010

Zak said...
I wanted to let everyone know about an orrganization and event that is being started to raise awareness about T-cell lymphoma or CTCL as it is in the medical field. Check out
The first event will be in May. All of the info is on the site. Please spread the word!!

February 7, 2010 1:08 PM

Saturday, February 6, 2010

A-Shift and the snow return for another cycle

We are back. With the exception of FF Franks, we are all back for another shift. We sent Franks off to the Palace (station 2) for the day. He has been texting us and sending pictures all day, telling us how much he loves it there. Unfortunately for him, he will be back at 9 next day so FF Zimmerman can have a day off. We'll try to keep him entertained. While he is in Paramedic class we'll buy him some Little Debbie's. They always bring a smile to his chubby little face.
As for the rest of us....we got back into whats turning out to be a normal routine around here. We got the usual chores done and started shoveling the snow. Once the chains were checked, we were ready to go. Breakfast was served and we got a little EMS training in to help our soon to be released EMT-I/FF Noell prepare for his last test. Here is a shot of the man himself combining the EMS training with a quick tutorial on Ropes and Knots. The man is a multi-tasker!

Please note the station 9 cold weather attire I am sporting. Yes the shorts over the long-johns tucked in the socks! I made it look good and Bevo pulled it off later as well.....

We grabbed a few wires down calls during the day and got to sit around and wait for probably the busiest guys today: AEP (The Power Company). Here are a few shots of our weather conditions in North West.

With the snow kicking ass all last night, a few of us came in and spent the night to be sure we made shift break in the morning. It was perfect timing to catch a true hero...FF/Paramedic Schrader picking up the slack and bringing in Old Glory for the night after "someone" forgot and ran a call. Way to go Schrader!

And in shorts? A true hero. Although he braved frigid temperatures while he was barely clothed.....he was not the only hero.
A Southie FF Kincer from "The Big Show" (Station 1), was everyone's hero today just as he was last cycle.

He had gone around plowing all of the stations well into the night last day we worked. He even put off dinner to knock out as many as he could before taking a break. Today he returned clearing the path for our trucks and the parking lots for our POV's. This is extremely helpful for the idiots who drive Mustang GT's in this weather. I won't mention any names (me). He also handed out the ever so precious rock salt. The guy over-did! Thanks again Barry...and sorry about the 73 snowballs as you left. It was a bunch of kids or something.
That's it for tonight. Wheels and Zimmerman are on the box and the roads suck. So lets call them only when you need more than just a band-aid. The word is that temps are gonna drop down to 18 tonight. Nothing good can come from that. So everyone stay safe out there, and warm too! We'll see you next day.

Monday, February 1, 2010

A-Shift: You are not gonna believe this..........

It's our last day of the cycle. Today fell on the 1st of the month.....that means we had the usual chores and check offs plus a few extras. With the usual going on, we shipped FF Zimmerman (Dixon's replacement) off to Station 14 for the shift. Way to jump on that grenade Z-man. Thank you. We also lost the wonder twins for the day. Franks and Christmas went to Paramedic class and they got smarter every minute. When they arrived back at the station.......well lets just say.......we made history!

There have been many great partners in history:

We added one more to the list...

Yes, the boys got to ride together on Medic 9 for the first time. Its a match made in heaven. Most said it would never happen. Here it is, the future of EMS. And this year they will both have glitter patches. True EMS heroes.
We have run at least 5 from the last count. We are still in Crisis Mode and the chains are on the wheels. Most of the roads are clear, however there are a few back roads that could give us some trouble if we run just tires. We are all in the house right now. The weather man promised some more garbage weather so we'll wait to see what happens. A-Shift will be back again Saturday. Until then be safe out there.

P.S. 63 more days and a wake up....then we shut the doors at #9. Goodnight folks.