I hope this finds everyone well since our last newsletter. Our nation is in a trying time right now as we have seen on the news with all of the riots in our major cities including here in the State of Missouri and also still dealing with the COVID-19. I am so proud of our members and also the Missouri Fire Service as a whole on how professional we have handled these calls over the last couple of months. As our fire marshal has always said, “neighbors helping neighbors.” For this meeting, travels have picked up in the last couple of days as the restrictions have been lifted in most parts of the state and I have been invited to events later this year from agencies.
My first invite was from the Mayview Fire Protection District. They hosted a picnic for their members and handed out awards for years of service. Some of their members received awards for 35 and even 40 years in the fire service and still serving. Thanks, Chief Kris White and your wife Jessica for the invite. I totally enjoyed the night.
The FFAM is in its busy season, to say the least. We will be attending the Revolutionary Fire Tactics at the lake on July 17. The FFAM is a vendor for this training and also the sponsor for the coffee for the attendees. Thanks go to David Woodward and the Lake FOOLS for the invite. Hope to see you there.
Greetings FFAM membership. As I sit at my desk to write this message to you, I can’t help to think how much our lives have changed since the last newsletter. COVID-19 has changed so much in our daily lives. How we respond to EMS calls, social distancing, staying home, what businesses are open, and do we need to be wearing a mask at all times, etc.
The COVID-19 outbreak has also affected the FFAM. We can’t promote the organization or have the events that we have become accustomed to like convention and the memorial service when they are regularly scheduled. Convention and the memorial services have been postponed to later dates which are a blessing for everyone and I will speak more about that later in this message.
Before the COVID-19 outbreak, I was able to attend two events. The first was my department awards banquet in Higginsville on March 7. A nice meal was provided by the American Legion ladies and our annual awards were handed out. The department also gave out a nice gift to all personnel as a thank you for our service. Fire Marshal Tim Bean and his wife Judy were in attendance. Thanks for all that were involved in making this night special not only to the firemen and their spouses but also to our fire marshal and his wife.
Greetings. I hope that you have survived the winter so far. This winter has been a typical Missouri winter, freezing one day with snow and the next it’s 50 with the sun shining. The flu season is in full effect and hope that you are washing your hands and keeping yourself safe.
The FFAM has been busy this calendar year so far. We have been attending meetings across the state representing the Missouri fire service and had representation at the LODD service at West Peculiar and even had representation at the Missouri Fire Chiefs meeting at Big Cedar. At the MoChiefs meeting, Jimmy Sebree was given the Lifetime Achievement Award. Congratulations Jimmy!
At the LODD at West Peculiar, the FFAM had several members there serving on the funeral team for the service. They included Jonathan Evans, Billy Smith, John Hesson, Joe Vaughn, and myself. Speaking with the department, they were very happy with the service we provided and they even became members of the FFAM after the service.
Greetings, I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving, a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. The FFAM continues to be busy as always representing the Missouri fire service all over the state. The FFAM has attended many events across this state which included several retirements of many fire service chiefs.
On December 4, 1st Vice President Larry Jennings, Assistant Director Josh Koepke, and myself traveled to Jefferson City to attend the retirement ceremony of Assistant Fire Marshal Greg Carrell. Greg has been in the office for 33 years, serving not only as the assistant fire marshal for the state but also as our fire marshal for several years. Greg has been icon for the Missouri fire service for many years and has been a great instructor to us the young generation. Thank you Greg for what you have done over the years, you will be greatly missed.
On December 20, 1st Vice President Larry Jennings, Director Joe Vaughn, Assistant Director Jonathan Evans and myself traveled to Clinton to attend the retirement ceremony of Fire Chief Leo Huff who served the department for 46 years. Chief Huff had gone thru the ranks of the department starting out as a firefighter. He started the emergency medical services for the department and also got the department a new ladder truck. Thank you Chief Huff for what you have done for the Missouri fire service and the citizens of Clinton, you will be missed.
Later that day I traveled to the Lee’s Summit Fire Department to help with their annual boot drive that helps needy families in the Lee’s Summit area. In the three days the department held the boot drive, the men and women of the IAFF Local 2195 and its Chief Officers of the Lee’s Summit Fire Department raised a new record of $31,642. They were greatly humbled by the generosity of the community. Great job Lee’s Summit fire, I am proud to be a part of this team.
Hello FFAM membership. Summer has left us and the fall season is upon us. The farmers are in the field taking care of the 2019 harvest, deer hunters are anxious to get into their deer stands and pumpkin spice is in full swing.
The FFAM has been continuously busy working for the membership. We are attending events that you the membership are inviting us to. Many directors have been working on budget request for next year’s budget to better serve the membership or having a presence at the national level at the memorial service in Emmitsburg, Maryland.
On September 11, I was a very busy attending events on the behalf of the FFAM. The day started with an invite from Knob Noster Fire Department for their 911 ceremony. The ceremony was held at the city hall with the lowering of the flags and remembering the lives that were lost that day. The ceremony was also attended by the Whiteman Air Force Base Fire Department as well. This was a very moving service and reminded us that many lives were lost that day but never forgotten. Thanks to Chief Rick Johnson for the invite, I thoroughly enjoyed this ceremony.
Greetings FFAM membership. Whoa, where did the summer go? When you’re reading this article school will be already back in session, fall will be upon us, farmers will be in the field shortly with the harvest, pumpkin spice will be back and before we know it Christmas and the end of the year will be upon us.
The FFAM has had a very busy summer attending conferences to promote the organization. The Missouri State Fair has passed, and the fall season is looking at being a busy one as well, as organizations are asking the FFAM to attend their conventions and help doing some more promotions for the organization. I am glad to see because this is what keeps the organization strong. Thank you!
Since my last article I have attended two conferences that were very productive for the organization. The first was the Revolutionary Fire Tactics at the Lodge of the Four Seasons. At this conference, myself and Assistant John Scheper of the Gravois Mills Fire department had a great response not only from vendors that wanted to become cooperate members but also fire departments that were not members. I had one department that took membership packets for their whole county as Tim Bean, our fire marshal had told them about the FFAM at their county chiefs meeting. Thanks Tim, I really do appreciate it. The biggest surprise I got at this conference came from Chairman David Woodward and Treasurer George Creamer on the last night. They presented a check to me with our vendor fee being donated back to us to be given toward the memorial. Thank you gentleman for your great hospitality and thank you for your donation to the memorial.
Greetings… Summer has finally arrived! We are probably planning vacations, spending time with family, or just wanting to stay home and just relax.
I am going to write about something different this newsletter. I am going to write about the benefits you receive as a FFAM member. Many times when I travel the state and visit departments, I have a lot of members that ask about what benefits they are suppose to receive as a member.
Greetings, Spring has arrived! We are all now thinking about vacations, going fishing, visiting family and friends, having picnics, and of course the kids are itching to get out of school for the summer.
The FFAM has been very busy since the last newsletter. Firefighter Day at the Capital in Jefferson City, on March 6, was a huge success. Firefighters from all over the state were visiting their representatives and senators, some were even were invited on the floor of the House of Representatives, talking about the issues in hand. Including workers compensation and other fire related issues. The Missouri Firefighter Funeral Assistance Team were the featured guests of the Fire Marshal’s office and also Governor Parson. While at the Capital, there was a special service recognizing the funeral team and also a visit with Governor Parson in his office, to talk about the issues the fire service is facing today. Kudos to Fire Marshal Bean and his staff in hosting a very successful Firefighter Day at the Capital.
March 30, was a busy day for myself and Assistant Director Josh Koepke of District 11. We first started traveling to the Alma Fire Protection District for their open house they were having at their station. The district was thanking the citizens for their continued support of the district. They had numerous actives going on like showing the trucks, activities for the kids, an auto extrication demo, Air Evac was there selling memberships and they even had a BBQ serving hamburgers and hot dogs to its patrons. While we were there 1st Vice President Larry Jennings was in attendance as well. Chief Jeff Buford and the Alma Fire Protection District thanks for the invite and it is obvious the patrons of your District support your department.
Later in the day Assistant Director Koepke and myself traveled to another Lafayette County department. We attended the open house at the Odessa Fire Protection District. Odessa was trying to educate their patrons of a upcoming April ballot, in which they were trying to pass two different issues. The first was a 30 cent levy increase to move the ambulance from the city to the fire district and another 15 cent levy increase to help with staffing for the district. They did much like what Alma did, and had patrons tour the station, look at the trucks and equipment the district had, and they too had a BBQ. While we were there they had several EMS calls, myself and Assistant Director Koepke rode out on the trucks to see how their operation worked. I am happy to say that both issues passed in Odessa. It is good to hear that the voters of Lafayette County support Public Safety. Thanks to Chief Kevin Campbell and his staff for the invitation, Josh and myself really enjoyed the visit.