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Firefighter Cancer Support NetworkThe Firefighter Cancer Support Network is for Firefighters and their immediate family who are faced with the challenging and often terrifying diagnosis of cancer.

We are a network of Fire Department personnel who are cancer surviviors, caregivers and voluteers willing to share our personal experiences.

Together We Can provide comfort, strength and hope to those diagnosed with cancer.



support_our_troops.gifWant to send your support to a soldier in harm's way, but have no idea of what to send, who to send it to, or how to send it? Any Soldier Inc. started in August 2003 as a simple family effort to help the soldiers in one Army unit, thus our name. However, due to overwhelming requests, on 1 January 2004 the Any Soldier effort was expanded to include any member, of any of the Armed Services, in harms way.


Operation USO Care PackageHundreds of thousands of U.S. Armed Forces personnel are overseas fighting the war on terrorism - away from their families, friends and the comforts of home.  To show these troops they have not been forgotten, The United Service Organizations (USO) has created Operation USO Care Package.



Union Centrics is proud to partner in fund raising for the National Firefighters 9-11 Memorial Patch Project.

Decals are now available...

You can read more about the National Firefighters 9-11 Memorial Patch Project from their website.

FDIC DAY 5 & 6 

Hello to all, FDIC 2010 is officially over...  Days 5 and 6 were more of the same, great classes, checking out vendor exhibits (what's new in the fire service), and of course more fun!  I was very impressed with a class entitled Traditions, Traditions!  It was a class instructed by Glenn Corbett that discussed the need for us to capture our history.  Too many of us are in this great profession that do not know about our past.  Why does the Maltese Cross represent the fire service, who invented the Halligan tool, what are those "bugles" on the Officer's collars?  By the way, they aren't even bugles...  Who were the past members of your department, do you have any old pictures of them?  Maybe we have some old items from the department's past that we can archive, so that future members of the department can appreciate where we have come from.  Hmm, maybe the Union can purchase an old Engine when it goes out to DRMO?  Just an idea, we gotta start somewhere.  Research fires from the department's past, interview veterans, retirees, everyone's got a story worth hearing.  Better yet, learn about some historical fires and how it impacted our jobs...  Fires like the Great Chicago fire, Coconut Grove fire, Beverly Hills Supper Club fire, the Hackensack Ford fire, these were all fires that changed the fire service.  It is so important to never forget where we have come from.

The next thing on the agenda was to see the exhibitors.  They have everything fire related that you can possibly imagine.  T-shirts, helmets, fire tools, books, fire tucks, you name, they had it.  One of the cooler items of the show was the new SCBA flatpack, currently being developed by MSA.  It is a pack that consists of multiple little air cylinders that conform to the users back.  They are a few months out from a wear test model, but it sure is interesting.  Only time will tell if this becomes the pack of the future.  The show is awesome, only thing is you can spend money very easily in a place like that!

And as usual, the day ended with a great party hosted by our Union Brothers of the Indianapolis Fire Department.  Each year the Brothers of the IFD open their Union Hall (which is an old firehouse) and throw a huge party for all of the shows attendees.  Tons of people, tons of fun, and a whole lot of bagpipes, drums, and kilts (some even made from turnout gear material).  As you can tell, FDIC week is a great experience that every firefighter needs to do at least once.  So start saving that money, and get ready for next years show.  Mark your calenders Brothers, FDIC 2011, March 21-26 be there!  Well now that the show is over, I will try to get some rest...  Stay Low  -Shane



Today was another day of classroom stuff, I had the opportunity to sit
in on three great classes. The first was a very sound class on Back
to Basics, Engine Co. Operations. It was about how we need to re-
focus on our bread and butter operation, pulling hose and putting the
wet stuff on the red stuff! It emphasized how important it is for us
to flow the right amount of water at structure fires, it's all about
gpm's vs. btu's. Hoseline management was another big portion of the
class, you have to take the time to make the time. Setting up your
hoseline for a smooth advance, will only help make the fire attack
that much more efficient. Be sure to work your nozzle properly...
Remember, there are only two positions on a nozzle, open and shut.
Get in and get out, don't play with the fire... You'll just piss it
off, open that nozzle, keep it open, cool that ceiling, and put it
out! Like I said, it was a great class. One of the other classes
that I took in was Truck Operations. Truck work is the essential
fireground support that is required at every structure fire. The
class covered the importance of ground ladders at every fire. If we
are going in to a two story occupancy, then you better have a way out
if your primary exit is cut-off. Sometimes you need to get a roof
report. Remember, you won't be able to see that 500 lb. A/C unit that
is waiting to fall on the Attack Crew if you don't look on the roof!
It also discussed the need for ventilation at every fire. If you open
up the building, then all of that nasty smoke and heat will not punish
the Engine as they make their advance. Let's not forget about
forcible entry! You can't do anything until you get the door open.
We must always stay proficient with the "Irons", it's our master key
into most structures. And lastly, unless we have a report from the
occupant that everyone is out of the structure, we must conduct a
primary search. One of our tactical benchmarks should be "Primary
Search All Clear". Basic fundamentals of our trade... These two
disciplines in conjunction with a strong command presence, will keep
us safe on the fireground.

The nights in Indy during FDIC is always fun. Tonight was the
National Fallen Firefighters Foundation fundraiser event, Stop Drop
and Rock n Roll! It was a fun filled event with live music, great
food, and an auction that was selling everything from artwork, leather
helmets, airlines tickets, thermal imagers, to turnout gear, and
everything else in between. All of the proceeds went towards this
great cause. Tonight's guest auctioneer was none other than Chief
Billy Goldfeder, of Even I was put to work
during the auction! Hey, anything for charity... Tonight's event was
just another example of the Brotherhood. I was even fortunate enough
to hangout with the head of Fire Engineering Chief Bobby Halton. He
is such a great man and inspiration to the fire service. So with that
said, here's to the Brotherhood! -Shane



Today is day 3 of the FDIC experience, however, it is also the
official opening of the conference. Today's Opening Ceremony was
another fantastic, it consisted of the beautiful sounds of the
Indianapolis Firefighters Emerald Society Pipes & Drums, an invocation
by Fire Chaplain Edward Byrne, opening words by Chief Bobby Halton,
key note speaker Chief Cheryl Horvath, as well as a visit from the
President of our International, Harold A. Schaitberger. You have to
hear the Pipes & Drums for yourself to truly understand when I say,
there is something magical about them. It brings upon you a strange
feeling, as if you can feel the Pride within the air, the Pride of
being part of this great profession we call firefighting. The day
continued with some great classroom sessions. Only to be topped off
with the annual F.O.O.L.S. (Fraternal Order Of Leatherheads) Bash! It
was another great party with a whole lot of fun and excitement. I was
honored to spend some time with great friends, meet new people, and to
see another great display of pipes & drums, to include a bagpiper with
flames shooting out of his pipes and a Flying F/F Monkey! You have to
love FDIC... I'll keep this one short, because it's late and I'm
exhausted. Stay Safe -Shane



 Day 2 of the conference consisted of wrapping up the H.O.T. classes.
It was another great day of training and sharing of knowledge. I was
lucky enough to participate in the Truck Search class today. This is
one of the more popular classes and it usually fills up pretty quick.
The class covered the importance and need for a Primary Search at all
structure fires. We covered techniques on your standard right/left
hand pattern search, quickly locating the fire, then searching on your
way back to the exit. We also covered the critical skill of VES
(Vent, Enter, Search). How to make those critical decisions of which
room to search via window entry, and how to do it properly. Lastly we
had to go through a mask confidence course. This is basically a house
of horrors for the interior firefighter. This course is intended to
teach a firefighter how to deal with those moments when the poop hits
the paddle. I also took a live fire Thermal Imaging class that opened
my eyes. Apparently there is more to TIC (thermal imaging camera)
training than changing the batteries! All jokes aside, there is a
definitely a need for more training on our TIC's. No matter what
class you decide to take there is always one thing that all the
instructors have in common... Passion! These are instructors who are
not here for the glory or that feather in their cap, they are here
because they LOVE the job and LOVE what they do. It is an honor and a
privilege to participate in the worlds premiere Fire Service
Conference. I must say to anybody has ever thought about attending,
this is something that EVERY firefighter must experience.

Aloha- Shane


Live" Report - Captain Furuta will provide a day by day report from FDIC! (Pictures uploaded to the Photo Gallery)

















Today was the beginning of the H.O.T. (Hands On Training) sessions. I
was fortunate enough to take a Live Burn class where we had the
opportunity to burn a house. The home was a 1-Story, Ordinary,
Private Dwelling, with a peaked roof. We were able to complete 10
burns in the home before it was completely destroyed. It is always
fun to meet the instructors and learn from they're experiences. Today
I was amazed to see that a handful of the "Live Burn" instructors were
Chiefs! Not just Battalion or Deputy Chiefs, but actual Chief of
Department... That is what is so impressive to me, here are these
Fire Chiefs that want to get out there and share their knowledge,
getting dirty and fighting fire side-by-side with the students!
Awesome!!! The day is long and tiring, the weather is cold (too cold
for Hawaii standards), and the instructors bust your butt during
class. Everything that hands on training should be. And there is one
more thing, the Brotherhood amongst all that is here is strong! We
are all hear because of one thing, to better the fire service... Here
is some pics from todays training. Aloha Bro -Shane






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